Rhonda Lee Carver - Dreaming Ivy

A Handmade Christmas

The family and I recently moved into our new home. The change was wonderful, until I went to the basement to gather our Christmas decorations. They were missing. Apparently the movers had left several of my boxes at the old house. The decorations had been stored in the rafters of the garage and were completely overlooked. Now they are gone. I’m a sentimental type and that one box of ornaments and decorations contained years of history and memories. Handmade ornaments my kids had made. Stockings we’d had since they were babies. Treasures lost. As many times as I’d told myself that they were only material items, my heart still ached at losing pieces of history.
The tree was up. It appeared sad without embellishments of shiny ornaments, tinsel and topper. It stood bare for a while. I just couldn’t seem to find the motivation to start all over again with decorations. One afternoon the girls and I made handmade handprints. Mixing up a batch of flour, salt and water we then pressed handprints and baked the creations. They turned out exceptionally well. So nice that we hung them on the tree. It was a moment for me. Let’s just say, I decided it was time to let go of what I didn’t have control over and enjoy what I have in front of me.
Over the next week the girls and I put our crafty hats on and made a variety of handmade ornaments. From gingerbread people to snowflakes to snowmen, we soon found that our bare tree was now full of “new” memories. And those same memories now filled our hearts.
I won’t lie, I still wish I had my box of family ornaments, but when life throws us lemons then make new memories. It’s what we have in our lives at the moment that means the most.

Rhonda Lee Carver bio:

Rhonda Lee Carver is a hopeless romantic. Whether you like sweet romance or erotica, she has written a story for you. Rhonda read her first novel at thirteen and that was the open window into her destiny. She began writing ghost stories as a teen, and as years passed, her stories bloomed into steamy, passionate tales. She likes creating intelligent, saucy heroines who can challenge a bad-ass hero. She believes in love, and everyone has a soulmate.  She dares her readers to allow fantasy to whisk them away for a moment of time…

Can a past love become their future?

The Thorntons’ mansion is full of timeless secrets waiting to be unraveled. When small-town journalist Ivy and ghost hunter Max are stuck in the forgotten, dilapidated house, they find more than just a haunting. Ivy finds herself dreaming of the former owners, Marcus Thornton and his lovely wife, Elizabeth. Their profound love was once the talk of the town, and the cause their mysterious, untimely deaths never found. When Ivy’s dreams begin to become reality, the mystery starts to unravel and sheds truth on more than just the past.
WARNING: Graphic language, naughty ghosts, a non-committal male, and a love that endures beyond time and death.

 Copyright 2012, Rhonda Lee Carver
All rights reserved, Lyrical Press, Inc.

 Ivy stepped into the corridor. She stopped and listened. Out of the corner of her eye she saw a shadow sweep across the wall. She turned as it disappeared. “Hello?” No answer. She stomped down the hall and burst into the room. “Hello–”
The room was empty.Ivy swallowed the taste of fright. A shiver raced across her skin. She had seen someone, or had she? She rubbed her eyes. Maybe the shadows were playing tricks on her.
A loud crack in the floor behind her sent Ivy twisting. The sun from the window blinded her. She acted on impulse. She drew her fist back and punched–landing on something solid. The force behind her connection with skin and bone sent her off balance, flailing backward. A hand on her wrist pulled her hard against a steely frame.
She met a dark stare, just as she felt wobbling. The impact of her body had sent him a step back. He lost his balance. Together they fell. The air whooshed from his chest as Ivy landed on top of the stranger.
She closed her eyes and remained still. She wanted nothing more than for the floor to swallow her. Several long seconds floated by. Neither of them said a word. She finally opened her eyes.
Embarrassed and confused, Ivy laid her palms against his shoulders, pushing herself up. She looked directly into his not-so-pleased expression and gulped. Enchanting green eyes, prominent cheekbones, midnight hair…and a pissed-off set to his jaw. She’d made a mistake–a huge one. “Max Shepard.” It wasn’t a question.
He narrowed his eyes. “Ivy Kennedy, journalist and amateur boxer?”
The deep, rich tone of his voice did funny things to the pit of her stomach. His voice wasn’t the only toned part of him. Pressed together gave her an up close and personal testimonial of his physical assets. Broad chest, tight abs to long legs, she could feel tight muscles and a curious bulge. She scooted her hip around the swelling in his jeans. Heat and realization spread through her body.
One corner of his mouth lifted. “It’s my cell.” Could he see straight through her?
He reached into his pocket and held up his phone. Ivy was certain her skin changed into the perfect color of mortification. She wondered just how bad this could get. Pasting a smile on her face, she said, “Nice to meet you.” The temperature rose between them into the triple digits. Their bodies seemed to melt together. He didn’t look like the pictures she’d seen on the internet. He looked more distinguished in person. “You’re older than I thought,” she blurted.
“Older, in a good way.” She licked her bottom lip and nervously pushed her hair behind her ear. “My mother said I have a bad habit of saying the most awkward things and rambling–” She swallowed. “–like I am now.” She moved slightly.
His zipper started to swell again. Was that another cell phone in his pocket, or… Before her mind could complete the thought, he wrapped his large hands around her waist and lifted her off him. He set her on her feet as he came to stand in front of her. “That’s better,” he said as he backed up. “Damn.” He kicked rug that must have been the reason behind their fall.
He stood there, silent. This was a complete disaster. She’d managed to give him a black eye to match the dark scowl on his face. She needed to start searching for a new job. Marshall would have her head for this.
WARNING: Light BDSM, kink, explicit sex.
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Dreaming Ivy by Rhonda Lee Carver Available for Sale
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  1. Wished you'd posted some pictures of those ornaments, great idea! I'd love to do that with my boys. Though I am terribly sentimental about our own ornaments as well; is it possible you could go back to the old house and ask for them? If they're that hidden, they might still be there?

  2. I tried. They're gone :( My kids and I really enjoyed making new ones though. Thank you for your comment.