Coastal Romance Holiday

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Rafflecopter at end of post

Sometimes a coastal romance is right on our doorstep. In Fremantle, Western Australia, there’s a Boxing Day tradition of picnicking beneath shady pine trees, eating Christmas leftovers while the kids hit the water to try out their presents.

                                         South Beach, before the crowds
South Beach, before the crowds
sbeach
1939 ‘SOUTH BEACH—REFLECTS.’, Sunday Times (Perth, WA : 1902 – 1954), 29 October, p. 26, viewed 25 November, 2013, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article58973101

But go back a few decades and this same quiet area just south of Fremantle city centre was home to a hippodrome, a fun fair. My neighbour remembers working there before the Second World War took him off to adult duties. It was the “Brighton of the West”.

Can you imagine the noise, the romance, the smell of fried food and the kids’ laughter? People would have paraded in their Sunday best — or maybe not! There’s an article that they raced cars here.

The coast has always been a favourite escape for West Australians. My gran grew up in the hills, about an hour inland, but on rare occasions, the family would holiday at the beach, travelling down on the old steam train, probably over tracks her dad helped to lay.

An escape to the sea promises freedom and adventure — and that’s the appeal of Coastal Romance. Coastal Romance is about freedom, wide open horizons, taking chances and daring to love. It celebrates the sea in all of its moods. When we escape the everyday, anything is possible.

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Share your memory of a seaside escape — yours or one you wish had been yours, like Cary Grant on the Riviera in To Catch a Thief — for your chance to win this gorgeous box of soaps. Wherever you are in the world, you’ll be able to enjoy the fragrance of the Australian bush, a scent that for me is part of the coastal experience. It is rain on gumtrees and the freshness of crushed leaves.  The contest is open internationally and I’ll do a random draw on Christmas Eve.

Plus, enter the Rafflecopter contest below for the Big Prize: a $100 Amazon giftcard and 26 awesome Coastal Romance ebooks.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tomorrow’s Blog Hop host is E E Carter. Be sure to check in with her for another chance to win!

Our Christmas Blog Hop Calendar- each one another chance to win!

28 November
Annie Seaton

29 November
Jenny Schwartz

30 November
E.E.Carter

1 December
Nicole Flockton

2 December
Dilys Carnie

3 December
Elsa Winckler

4 December
Maureen O Betitia

5 December
Sherry Gloag

6 December
Chris Stovell

7 December
Jaimee Brooker

8 December
Susanne Bellamy

9 December
Barbara Cool Lee

10 December
Tea Cooper

11 December
Juliet Madison

12 December
Linda Mitchelmore

13 December
Julie McCullogh

14 December
Eva Scott

15 December
Maureen Fisher

16 December
Rachael Johns

17 December
Susanne O’Leary

18 December
Jean Joachim

19 December
Demelza Carlton 

20 December
Lily Malone

21 December
Marisa Cleveland

22 December
Monique McDonnell

23 December
Lauren McKellar

24 December
Annie Seaton 
PRIZE DRAW

  • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

    So, random.org has spoken (I'm high tech these days — no more paper scraps in a hat), and the winner is…

    Helen Sibbrett

    Helen, I'll send you an email. Congratulations!

    Thank you everyone for joining in the Coastal Romance Christmas Blog Hop – and wishing you happy holidays and a joyous New Year!

    In case you missed it, Annie announced the overall winner of the $100 Amazon giftcard and 26 ebooks on the Coastal Romance Facebook group: Lisa W

    The Coastal Romance Facebook group (which you're very welcome to join) is https://www.facebook.com/groups/1423492034533280/

  • Christine Stovell

    Oh, you're spot on with that description of Coastal Romance! Lovely!
    (Ps – I'm another member so no need to include me in the draw, but good luck to everyone else!)

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      Christine, I'm glad my definition resonated with you. Coastal Romance really feels like the label (for lack of a better word) that I was searching for to understand what I write. Seems a lot of people feel that way, which is lovely.

  • Chanpreet

    What a beautiful post. I've never been to Australia but would love to…one day. I can easily imagine all the noise and gaiety on the beach from your description. I haven't seen very many coasts but I never fail to be amazed by their beauty.

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      Chanpreet, I hope you make it to Australia one day and have the chance to enjoy our lovely beaches. You're so right. Every coast has its own beauty.

  • Marcy Shuler

    When I was young we went camping every summer when my dad was off from teaching. There are 5 kids in my family and I remember one memorable time we were near the Atlantic ocean and went 'fishing' for crab by throwing a raw chicken leg attached to a string into the water. We actually caught quite a few and cooked them up on the camp stove for dinner.

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      I had thought I'd heard of weird ways to "fish", but that's a new one for me. Thanks, Marcy, you gave me a laugh as I imagined the scene. I bet the crabs were yum, though :)

  • Shari

    I live in Kansas not any coast line here, lol. I love visiting the beach though.

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      I'd love to see your prairies. They must have that overwhelming rippling openness of the sea. Thanks for visiting, Shari :)

  • Coleen Kwan

    When I was a kid, the coast was an eight hour drive away. After a long, hot, tiring drive, the smell and sight of the sea was incredibly uplifting. Now I live in Sydney, but the sea and the beach still hold that special magic.

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      Absolutely. I swear you can smell the change in the air kilometres before you reach the sea. The promise of holidays, home or even…romance!

  • Helen Sibbritt

    Hi Jenny

    Sounds wonderful we used to alwyas go to the beach for holidays when we were kids up to the Central Coast of NSW and then hubby and I would take our kids down south to the beach for Chrissy holidays and they were always so much fun, this Christmas Day we are going to my sister's place on the Central Coast always lots of fun as well :)

    Have Fun
    Helen

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      I wonder if the beach for Christmas is part of being Aussie? Noice ;)

  • http://www.etsy.com/shop/mysweetiepiepie mysweetiepiepie

    I love the southern coastal areas.

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      Where it doesn't get too hot? :)

      Around January I start to think I should move to Hobart.

  • Margaret Lynette Sharp

    I'm delighted to visit your blog and those of others in Coastal Romance!

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      Thanks, Margaret. You're always so supportive and cheerful. Thank you!

      • Margaret Lynette Sharp

        So are you, Jenny! Thanks! :)

  • http://www.rachaeljohns.com Rachael Johns

    Memory Christmas. I love the image of your gran travelling by train to the beach :)

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      I so wanted to include a photo of my great aunt as a little girl in the 1920s dressed up in a kimono with a little paper parasol, but the note on the back of the photo said "school concert" so it would have been cheating to include it … but still, school concerts are at Christmas time!

  • samstillreading

    I spent a lot of my childhood holidays up at Monkey Mia. Not a big beach fan, but I love fishing!
    Thanks for a lovely giveaway!

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      Dolphins! Isn't that the automatic response to Monkey Mia — that and smiling. Great memory to share :)

  • bh313

    I live in a coastal community in Florida and love the beach. Spend a month every year there with family and friends. great memories.

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      It's almost as if the beach invites us to relax and simply enjoy being with those we love. Thanks for sharing your beach memory :)

  • http://www.shirleywine.com Shirley Wine

    We have a similar tradition here in New Zealand … leftovers on the beach on Boxing Day. It's also my birthday so that's one day everyone waits on me. Makes a real change.

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      I hope you also get double-prezzies. Christmas and your birthday!

  • Lily Malone

    Kalbarri has a special place for me. I escaped there a few times many (many) years ago to fix my broken heart! It worked!

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      Now you're inspiring a romance story – the sea does seem to help heartbreak…and I'm thinking a second chances story. Hmm.

  • annieseaton26

    It looks like a beautiful place. I have never been west! I will get there one day.

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      I wish you'd been able to attend the Freo RWAus conference this year, Annie. It was my first, and amazing if overwhelming. Then again, the weather didn't cooperate, so probably best to see Freo a different time :)

  • Demelza Carlton

    Can't say we've ever ended up at South Freo on Boxing Day – we're usually hiding in the air conditioning at someone's house a little further inland :D

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      Ssshh. Me too, D. Me too ;)

      But I swear Christmases have gotten hotter recently (or am I getting old?). Let's hope this year isn't a 40 degree day!

  • elizabethellencarter

    What a beautiful post Jenny! So many great memories you've shared. I live on the Gold Coast and I'm sorry that I don't get down to the beach more often.

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      It's weird, isn't it? We live so close to beautiful places and take them for granted. I'm guilty of it, too.

  • http://torimacallister.wordpress.com Tori MacAllister

    My mom was always a working single mother for most of my life, and when I was in high school she actually went back to college to get her degree. Needless to say, a vacation was a foreign concept to us and we were okay with that, but when a family member offered the use of their condominium on an island off the coast of Charleston, South Carolina, she insisted we go. We drove 15 hours straight from New Jersey, singing the sound track to South Pacific for the last 2 hours to keep ourselves awake and arrived late an night, so we could hear the ocean but not see it. I still remember startling awake in the morning and rushing to the balcony to see the Atlantic stretched out in front of me. We ate a hurried breakfast and went outside, impressed that the beach was literally outside our door. I could not believe how warm the water was, being used to New England and Middle Atlantic water which was so cold even in the height of the summer – it was like bathwater with the Gulf Stream! We spent a blissful week just walking on the beach and reading, and looking back as a adult, I can only imagine how restorative it was to the Mom who gave me so much and asked so little in return.

    Thanks for the giveaway, and the chance to share my favorite seaside memory!

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      Tori, I have happy tears reading your story. Your holiday memory is so precious. Thank you for sharing it. Happy Thanksgiving!

  • Kelly Ethan

    Fantastic giveaway and I hope you have a great december and xmas!!
    Kelly Ethan

    • http://authorjennyschwartz.com Jenny_Schwartz

      Thanks, Kelly :) and Happy Christmas (and mad preparation for Christmas) to you, too!