Opening Just One Present #Tuesday Tidbit #Excerpt #Inspiration

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.




When you were growing up, were you allowed to open just one present on Christmas Eve? The family in my new book, Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me, has this tradition. Below is an excerpt where they do just that. This part of the story is told from the point of view of Daryl, the father. Other characters include his wife Marti, his two daughters Natalie and Sarah, and his parents.


That night, as we usually did on Christmas Eve, we went to the early evening Mass, then ate a late supper of homemade oyster stew. Marti had inherited the recipe from her mother and perfected it over the years. After supper, we all gathered in the living room, where we would each open just one gift.

“I want to open the one from Natalie,” said Sarah. She searched among the packages and gift bags under the tree and soon found it.

The week before, Marti, Natalie, and I had bought the tree and decorated it, and Sarah hadn’t seemed to mind that we’d done this without her.

“Well, kitten, you might as well go first,” said Dad.

Sarah sat down between Natalie and me on the couch and tore into the present with gusto. I glanced across the room at Marti, expecting to see her grimace, since she liked to save wrapping paper. But for once, she only smiled.

Sarah must have read my mind, for she said, “Oops. I’m sorry, Mom. I promise I’ll be more careful with my other presents.”

“It’s all right, honey,” said Marti.

“What’s in there?” said Mom. “Show us.”


What’s in Sarah’s present? Why did she miss the tree decorating? Read the book and find out. By the way, it’s now absolutely free from Smashwords. Please see below for details.


Now, I have two exciting events to announce, and I hope you’ll be able to take advantage of one or both of them. First of all, Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me, The Red Dress, and My Ideal Partner are now absolutely free as part of the Smashwords end-of-year sale, which will run until December 31st. You can click here for more information and to download these books.

Also, I’ll be playing the piano and singing on Thursday, December 23rd, at noon mountain time at The Hub, here in Sheridan, Wyoming. If you live in my neck of the woods, you’re welcome to come and enjoy a delicious, nutritious lunch while listening to my music. If you’re unable to attend, you can view the event on Facebook, and a recording should be available later. You can click here to visit the event’s Facebook page. Again, I hope you can take advantage of these exciting events.


New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

Front cover image contains: elderly woman in red sweater sitting next to a window.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?



My Amazon Author Page





Author: abbiejohnsontaylor

I'm the author of two novels,, two poetry collections, and a memoir with another novel on the way. My work has appeared in various journals and anthologies. I'm visually impaired and live in Sheridan, Wyoming, where for six years, I cared for my totally blind late husband who was paralyzed by two strokes. Please visit my website at

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