I have just wrapped up a wildly busy week! Too busy even to keep up with my blog, which is rare for me.

On Tuesday eve, I had a book event at Rakestraw, an independent book store in a nearby town. I was hoping and praying for at least five people to show up…it was a cold night and rain was on its way.

Would you believe that 45 people showed up? 45! I was touched beyond words…and it was a thoroughly enjoyable evening. Such bright people, so interested in the Amish and the takeaway value their culture provides for us (my main mantra!).

On Thursday morning, I spoke to a young mothers’ group at a church about an hour away from my home. Awesome church, remarkable group of women, sincerely interested in raising their children to be grounded in an unstable world.

I’m not the smoothest speaker in the world…as much as I prepare and practice, I still wish I could edit myself and do it over! But I love the Q&A time…the questions people ask are so interesting. And those questions help me learn what I’m not addressing, or clarifying. For the next time…

Starting in mid-January, I am speaking at an event every single week through the end of March. Phew! (Not complaining! Not at all. A packed calendar is a good thing for a new author.)

I have a little breather with speaking engagements/radio interviews now…which I’m ready for. My house is happily filling up this next week with kids/husband on vacation and I have many details to wrap up for Christmas.

To bump up the celebratory mood a notch…

Let’s have another giveaway! I have a hot-off-the-press copy of “The Choice” in my hands and I have another copy of “To Love and Cherish” (a devotional). Your pick!

Here’s the catch…you need to answer this question: What helps you slow down in the week before Christmas?

I’m looking forward to the answers! We all need to slow down and savor the week ahead of us. It will be over all too soon.

You have until Sunday eve to post or e-mail.

Leave a comment or pop me an e-mail: suzanne at suzannewoodsfisher com

Have a wonderful, wonderful weekend! And remember to slow down, at least once a day, to stop and soak up Christmas.

About Suzanne

Suzanne Woods Fisher writes bestselling, award winning fiction and non-fiction books about the Old Order Amish for Revell Books. Her interest in the Plain People began with her Old Order German Baptist grandfather, raised in Franklin County, Pennsylvania. Suzanne's app, Amish Wisdom, delivers a daily Amish proverb to your phone or iPad. She writes a bi-monthly column for Christian Post and Cooking & Such magazine. She lives with her family in California and raises puppies for Guide Dogs for the Blind. To Suzanne's way of thinking, you can't take life too seriously when a puppy is running through your house with someone's underwear in its mouth.


  1. Andrea says:

    Suzanne –
    I would LOVE to read 'The Choice'! I have been fascinated with the Amish since I was a little girl. Their way of life always seemed so appealing.

    I will be happy to post a review on my blog, also –

    I am pretty new to the blogosphere, and love it! All social media – including Facebook & Twitter – are so much fun; great community!

    Blessings & Merry Christmas –


  2. Andrea says:

    Oops – forgot to answer the question!

    I slow down by being enrolled in seminary and 'forced' to finish a paper – which was due and completed yesterday. That consumed me for the few days prior – and ideally should have been completed sooner than 10 minutes before it was due. The bad habit of procrastination reared its ugly head!

    And congrats on the big turnout at the bookstore!


  3. connie e says:

    To unwind before Christmas I like to put on the old fashioned Christmas music and sit back with a cup of hot cocoa by the fireplace, and also have a old Christmas movie marathon the week before.

    Thanks for this chance!

    Connie e


  4. Heather Tanner says:

    What do I do to slow down before Christmas? My family gets together, makes snacks and we watch our favorite Christmas movies together!

  5. Mrs.M. says:

    I work for Hallmark, so my hours of work will increase until Christmas, but I've asked my family to step up a bit more with cooking & cleaning around the house so I can have a little time to rest & unwind at home. Reading, and knitting or crocheting, or sometimes making jewelry are ways that help me relax. And the handwork also makes for good time to pray for people while my hands are busy. Merry Christmas! I you choose to send me a book, I'd really like to read your book 'The Choice' 🙂

  6. Joann King says:

    I am so looking forward to reading your books, your anew author to me and i'm excited to get started on your books.

    What helps you slow down in the week before Christmas? What helps me is to be with my family and I love the "Mammaw" thing were I can bake cookies with my Grandsons who are 4 and 2. LOVE IT!! And to just relax and read a good book. Usually I get lost in them!!

    Have a Merry Christmas and May God richly Bless you and your family.

    Joann King

  7. Cathy says:

    I believe the snow will for sure! Thanks for the giveaway. Merry Christmas!

  8. Carol Q. says:

    The last week before Christmas i try to avoid stores and malls, leave that craziness to others who just have to get the last gift. I sit with my grand daughter and i read stories about the real reason for the season and i tell her stories of what Chritmas was like when i was child before it was way over commercialized. As you know I have read The Choice but I would love to see you donate it to a womens shelter if i win.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I would cherrish the book and read it til the end .Thank-you for sharing your Amish books with all.
    May you and your's have a merry xmas & a Happy New Year of 2010.
    sincerrely your's sharon

  10. NancyG says:

    The answer to how to slow down before Christmas is to have someone you need to give some quality time with snuggle under a blanket with a cup oc Christmas tea and READ. Of course I just finished a book and am in desperate need of a new book…anybody who could help me out…PLEEEEEASE..

  11. Karla says:

    To relax, I put on some Christmas CD's in the quiet evening, and sit with a good book, preferably Amish fiction, with the tree lights twinkling, thinking of the birth of the special baby so many years ago. We often get so busy with preparations, we forget the reason for the celebration.

  12. Sarah Sabo says:

    Simply putting Christ back into Christmas. I think there is so much emphasis on gifts, food, parties, and events. Scale back on some of that. Remember though those things are nice they aren't what the day is all about. Also, take time to make homemade gifts and enjoy the process of making a plate of cookies or basket/tin of brownies rather than rushing around like mad to buy this and that. Elaborate dinners are nice but not entirely necessary and if possible divide up the work by asking guests to either bring something or help.

  13. Marilyn says:

    My favorite way to slow down the week or so before Christmas is to read a good book. A Christmas book makes it even more special. Add in a little hot chocolate and some Christmas cookies and I am totally relaxed!

  14. lollipops says:

    I would love to win! To slow down the week before Christmas – I try to have everything done before then, and I try to keep a new I want to read book handy, and I take a pajama day to do just that. 🙂


  15. Poppy The Puppy says:

    Hi Suzanne!
    Though I am young, married with no children (yet), I see life just speeding up until Christmas. Even with all but the dogs shopped for, the amount of running around is crazy. The thought of all that has to happen to survive Christmas Eve is daunting! But, come 5:30, when my husband's family has arrived at our church to watch him perform as part of the Worship Team (which they have never done before), life will be good. 2 service, each an hour long, of peace.

    And, as you know, a little puppy breath helps melt the rush away too 🙂

    Many Blessings to you and your family at Christmas,

  16. Buukluvr81 says:

    To unwind before Christmas I bake and have the house smelling like goodies, and then sit and relax with a good Christmas book!

    Mollydawn1981 at aol dot com

  17. Cindy (Letters From Midlife) says:

    My choice would be the devotional.

    I keep the week before Christmas calm by just saying no to things so I can relax at home. Most of the obligatory things are done earlier in the month but I still make a conscious effort to keep the calendar clear the week before Christmas.

  18. Michelle says:

    Thanks for the giveaway! To slow down in the week before Christmas, I like to bake while listening to Frank Sinatra sing Christmas music, watch Christmas movies, and even sit next to the lit tree to read a book (no other lights).

    Merry Christmas!
    scraphappy71 at sbcglobal dot net

  19. Sandy Kaczanowcke says:

    For years, I have always tried to get every done the week before. Then the last week is MY time to enjoy Christmas. I watch all the old classic Christmas movies in the evening, while drinking warm cider, with a fire in the fireplace and just the Christmas lights on. And I always read Dickens' A Christmas Carol.

    I would like to be entered to win a copy of either of the books. Thanks for the opportunity.

    Have a Blessed Christmas.

  20. NancyLee623 says:

    I relax by sending the puppies and the kids out to play in the snow. I get to watch them run and have fun playing while nice and warm having tea by the patio door. Makes me feel young again. If I wasn't disabled I would be running around with them also..
    Thank you for your fun contests.

  21. remnant reminscences says:

    Today was the last day of school before my Christms break begins! Can't tell you how happy I am!!

    I'm not sure how I'll unwind though…probably take long afternoon naps!

    I would like a chance to win the devotional since I already have The Choice. I've read it and recommend it!

    Merry Christmas!!

    ldneuhof at hotmail dot com

  22. Sunnie says:

    Suzanne, Christmas, I just love it. I am just like a kid again, myself! I love every single bit of it, the hustle and bustle, decorations, in and out, the tree, of course and the gifts. And of course, the main thing, the birth of our Savior. So its busy and often a bit hectic. To slow down, unwind, relax, I make sure the shopping has been completed early. No last minute stuff for me! So, that last week I spend playing with the grandkids. I always take some of my vacation days while they are out of school to spend with them. I have to admit, that isn’t really “slowing” down that week perse, however, its the best way to spend it! With the people I love the most.