Sometimes people seem destined to meet.  Such is the case with myself and a friend from across the United States. I am Atlantic Coast and she is Pacific.  We met through a writing site called and became friends through our slightly off-the-beaten path attitude towards life.

To this end, our friendship spawned an idea for a budget friendly e-book of ideas of home and garden projects.  Not knowing how to go about this undertaking, we decided to turn our idea into a holiday edition instead.  When in the very initial stages of planning, a crisis took place in my family and stopped the e-book plan dead in it's tracks.

My youngest daughter, just beginning her Master's year of college, was involved in an automobile accident.  She sustained what we refer to as a life altering leg injury. Within 24 hours of the accident, she was in surgery to pin many broken bones in her lower leg and ankle back together. Several days later, she was sent home to allow the swelling to recede and to rest the soft tissue before the trauma surgical team could tackle the tougher job of putting the puzzle of her ankle back together.

For nearly two weeks, we struggled to control her pain and ease the swelling, severe bruising, and internal bleeding.  Rods were attached through her leg to hold it secure until she could be operated on again.  When the two weeks were up, she went back and in nearly 2 hours, the surgeon had pinned, screwed, plated and wired her leg and ankle back as best he could.

Two days later:  home again to begin the long road to recovery and whatever that entails.

In the meantime, my friend Pam and I took every spare minute we could to put our projects together for our holiday e-book because while I spent my days at the hospital, Pam had decided to finish the project and allow all of the proceeds from it to go to Brittany for some of the needs she would be facing due to the accident.  I was so touched by her selflessness that I couldn't say, "no, I can't do this" even though my mind screamed at me that I was crazy to take it on.

Between Pam, myself and another friend, Angela, whose technical knowledge not only helped see the e-book to fruition but was also responsible for this website set up, we did it.  I can't thank them both anywhere near as much as I wish I could.  None of us may ever "meet", but I'll never forget either of them for their generous and caring hearts.

And so, you have the background for the e-book, Homemade Christmas Gift Ideas, Decorating & Tips.  The book is filled with the ideas of east and west, traditional and not-so-much.  It is Pam and it is Shirley.  We hope you enjoy the projects and ideas contained within and resonate with the spirit in which the book was created.  Christmas is, after all, the season for giving.  We have given our best to you through this holiday e-book and our best as well to a young woman on this early part of her journey in life.  Enjoy.

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