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Monday, December 31, 2018

Book Review: Final Shadows (A Bishop Files Novel Book 3) by Kay Hooper

Final Shadows (A Bishop Files Novel Book 3)
by Kay Hooper
December 31, 2018
Pages: 336
Publisher: Berkley
A desperate underground war with the survival of millions at stake looms in the electrifying conclusion of the New York Times bestselling Bishop Files Trilogy.

Tasha Solomon's world turned upside-down when the psychic abilities she had tried so hard to live with in secret suddenly made her a target stalked by unseen enemies.

John Brodie is by nature, by training, and by instinct a Guardian. He is a member of an intricate and secretive network of individuals who have devoted their lives to the deadly struggle of saving psychics in danger of being taken or being killed. It is a war very few other people even know exists, and yet its tentacles stretch deeply and dangerously into every aspect of society.

Tasha has abilities not even she is aware of, abilities that the other side would give virtually all they possess to destroy. And if being hunted like an animal were not bad enough she has to learn how to become a warrior in a battle she did not choose, to save people she does not know, and possibly even the very world around her.

If John Brodie can keep her alive long enough.

Final Shadows brings to a close the Bishop Files trilogy by Kay Hooper. A network of people with psychic abilities must work together to end the war between those Bishop has sworn to protect and the factions. The horrors of the factions must be stopped at all costs, and Murphy is more than willing to pull out all the stops to make sure this war ends once and for all.

Murphy is an interesting character that is shrouded in mystery. A few questions about her are answered but really all that does is create more questions. A future series that focuses on Murphy’s past, present and future would make a superb addition Hooper’s books. Duran is the other character that needs to be explored further. He’s one that you want to hate but aren’t so sure that you should. His unanswered questions are by far the most intriguing.

This final book was one of the best I have read by Hooper. The underlying secrets that are brought to light and even the questions that are still unanswered made this a truly interesting read. It will open your mind to endless possibilities and what I hope is not the end of some fantastic characters.

Review: A Deadly Web (A Bishop Files Novel Book 2)

Getting 5 sheep

Denise B

About the Author:
Kay Hooper was born in California, in an air force base hospital since her father was stationed there at the time. The family moved back to North Carolina shortly afterward, so she was raised and went to school there.

The oldest of three children, Kay has a brother two years younger and a sister seven years younger. Her father (now retired) and brother are builders who own a highly respected construction company, and her mother worked for many years in personnel management before becoming Kay's personal assistant, a position she held until her untimely death in March 2002. Kay's sister Linda works as her Business Manager, Events Coordinator, and Regional Publicist.

Kay graduated from East Rutherford High School and attended Isothermal Community College — where she quickly discovered that business classes did not in any way enthrall her. Switching to more involving courses such as history and literature, she also began to concentrate on writing, which had been a longtime interest. Very quickly hooked, she asked for a Christmas typewriter and began seriously working on her first novel. That book, a Regency romance titled Lady Thief, sold to Dell Publishing in 1980. She has since published more than 60 novels and four novellas

Kay is single and lives in a very small town in North Carolina, not far from her father and siblings. Deigning to live with her are a flock of cats (and a couple of dogs!) with various personalities who all like sleeping on manuscripts and whatever research happens to be spread across Kay's desk. Visit Kay's Pets Page for pics!

Kay also fosters cats and kittens for the Community Pet Center, a non-profit rescue organization on whose board she also sits.

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Book Review: The Demon Accords Compendium Vol. 2 (Stories from the Demon Accords Universe) by John Conroe

The Demon Accords Compendium Vol. 2 (Stories from the Demon Accords Universe)
by John Conroe
May 13, 2018
Pages: 77
Volume 2. Four more stories set in Amazon bestselling author John Conroe's Demon Accords universe: the mind of a mind reader, babysitting the supernatural, packing up, and what's it like to be a queen. More fun for fans of the Accords with set up for the series story arc.

In volume 2 of The Demon Accords Compendium back stories continue for the demon accords universe.

It starts out with Lost Souls, which features Nika, the resident telepath who follows a man who kidnapped a baby. What she finds is a Vorsook, a very powerful alien who can control the minds of almost anyone. Hoping that she can block the alien from taking over her mind she is in for the fight of her life.

Sitting Pretty follows Toni, as she babysits the twins and tries to take them out for a peaceful walk on a beautiful day. As with most things in the Demidova life, nothing is ever as easy and peaceful as one hopes. The twins powers are still a mystery, but insights begin to emerge in this exciting tale.

Pack is All takes place right before Sitting Pretty and takes place between the New York Pack Alpha’s and Declan, who much to the alpha’s dismay has slighted them and the pack by interfering in pack business. Declan, however, feels that as Stacia’s mate he has the right under pack to law to use all resources at his disposal to protect his mate and any family they have down the road. This is a pivotal point for Declan, Statia and Holly and where they may go in the future.

Finally, the compendium finishes up with Queen of the Night which is done from Tanya’s point of view and a trip to Orlando and Disneyland. A demon portal is found in Orlando and needs to be closed. Chris plans a trip to Disneyland for the entire crew to check out the portal and hopefully close it. A glimpse of what we might expect in the Conroe’s next demon accords book is seen here.

Getting 5 sheep

Denise B

About the Author:
Conroe wrote his first readable novel, God Touched, right after finishing his daughter's copy of Twilight and muttering: "Vampires don't farging sparkle!"

With seven more books in the series and a stand alone novel (Black Frost), he doesn't seem to be slowing down. He cut his reading teeth on the likes of Robert E. Howard, Edgar Rice Burroughs, JRR Tolkien, Robert Heinlein, Andre Norton, and H. Beam Piper.

Financial professional by day and author by night (actually by morning), he bangs out his stories with fingers that are usually sore from forge burns or getting beat up at the dojo.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Book Review: The Demon Accords Compendium (Stories from the Demon Accords Universe) by John Conroe

The Demon Accords Compendium (Stories from the Demon Accords Universe)
by John Conroe
April 29, 2018
Pages: 131
Now in an exciting group of stories from the Amazon bestselling Demon Accords series find out how it all started - from another pair of eyes. How to raise a God Touched exorcist. Extracurricular college fun. What do you get the vampire who has everything - excitement. Four stories from the Demon Accords Universe starring some favorite characters and introducing a new one. Novella length fun.

Conroe has put together the first volume of stories that give you a glimpse into the demon accords universe from another perspective.

The first story gives Lydia’s insight into Chris and Tanya meeting for the first time. It was fun to see it from her side of things not to mention it’s always nice to revisit the beginning of this love story.

The second story is the story of Chris from his grandfather’s eyes when he was about 15 years old. Chris and Alex get called in to search and rescue a couple of fishermen who have gone missing. The insight into what Alex feels for Chris and how Chris handles demon hunting close to when it all started for him was a story worth including in this book.

The third story gives us a glimpse into the werewolf pack. Keitan is accompanying a friend camping and one of the guys with them is giving off a very strange vibe. Quick thinking maybe the only way the group survives the night.

Finally, the compendium finishes up with a few character favorites. Arkady is bored and decides to mess with Declan only to find that Lydia is not at all impressed. These leads Arkady to question his honor and purpose on this earth.

Getting 5 sheep

Denise B

About the Author:
Conroe wrote his first readable novel, God Touched, right after finishing his daughter's copy of Twilight and muttering: "Vampires don't farging sparkle!"

With seven more books in the series and a stand alone novel (Black Frost), he doesn't seem to be slowing down. He cut his reading teeth on the likes of Robert E. Howard, Edgar Rice Burroughs, JRR Tolkien, Robert Heinlein, Andre Norton, and H. Beam Piper.

Financial professional by day and author by night (actually by morning), he bangs out his stories with fingers that are usually sore from forge burns or getting beat up at the dojo.

Friday, December 28, 2018

Selah's Chilling TV Review: Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (Netflix)

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina
TV Series (2018– )
Creator: Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa
Stars: Kiernan Shipka, Ross Lynch, Lucy Davis
Season 1- 11 episodes
runtime: 1h
Genre: Drama, Fantasy, Horror
As her 16th birthday nears, Sabrina must choose between the witch world of her family and the human world of her friends. Based on the Archie comic.

Not gonna lie, when I heard The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina was coming to Netflix, I was stoked. I loved the 90's show, but also grew to love her other incarnations, including The Chilling Adventures comics. I was also nervous as hell because the source comics are, shall we say, intense.

So how does the newest version of Sabrina measure up? Let's take a look. The series starts more established than other incarnations, which I like. We don't need a total rehash here, plus it sets this take apart from other versions. Sabrina is already aware and used to her powers, she and Harvey are already close, and she's already an established student at Baxter High. I also like that she has more of an established friend circle. Rosalind and Suzie are solid, interesting characters with subplots of their own. I love that a full range of people is included, and though I've seen different thoughts on how well that representation is actually done, for me it adds to the empowered vibe and is better than a lot of other things airing at the moment. Your mileage may vary. 

The main arc of the show is not just Sabrina keeping what she is secret, but deciding whether to side with her witch side or her mortal side (path of night/path of light). Add in an entity that takes over her teacher, other witches her own age, and freakin Satan, and you've got a hell of a plot on your hands. 

The good: I personally love that we get to see more of Greendale and other points of view than we ever did with Westbridge. Part of that is the format - an hour drama gives you more room than a family sitcom. The fact that the town is incorporated into the witchcraft history, though, grounds things for me. The decision to outright hit plot points that the 90s show danced around for seasons is a relief. Yes, let's please let Harvey and Sabrina's friends know sooner than later so that can actually be explored. Yes, let's bring in the witch hunter lineage from the start instead of a mid-series mcguffin. Let's have tons to work with right off the bat and keep the relationship aspect a subplot. The adjusted focus really brings home that it's a different type of show (Not to hate on the sitcom, mind you, but why do the same things twice?). 
I love the revamp of a lot of the characters. The performances are solid across the board and help push things along in some of the clunkier moments. Sabrina has been developed into a fantastic character - she retains her good intentions and recklessness, but this time the consequences are much higher than in the '90s, the lessons more permanent. Some of the plot elements are a little sudden and it's slow to build in places, but I never felt like it doesn't work.

I love the darkness in this. It brings out Sabrina's choices much more. Characters don't come to play, and it offers a very different take on the decisions that Sabrina and the others face. By incorporating more of the main cast into the mythos, everyone has much more of a stake in things and are affected by her decisions. 
The new additions are fun and generally used well. I feel for Rosalind and Suzie and can't wait to see what happens to them. I love Prudence's attitude and how she learns about all the things going on within the Church of Night. Madame Satan is a beast. Father Blackwood fulfills the questionable authority figure role adequately. It's amazing to see Ambrose brought back from obscurity. His snark and confinement are a smart substitute for Salem and he walks the line between hilarious and sympathetic well so far.

As for the old - Hilda and Zelda fill their roles as mentors but also get to explore their own issues. Harvey...for the first time I get why Sabrina would be into Harvey other than he's cute and she's supposed to. That's nothing against other actors - I think this version is plain given more to do and is allowed to reflect more nuance and empathy.

I also really love the overt discussion of gender roles and talk about struggling for things like power, freedom, and love. Sabrina has always walked a line between a reactionary and proactive character, so to see her still being a little naive but also being more aggressive in her intentions is fantastic. There are some bold choices going on that match the vibe of who Sabrina and how the franchise has grown. It's interesting that this isn't just witch vs mortal. There's a lot of grabs for power within the coven, itself, and how that might play out in the future fascinates me. 

The bad: Salem doesn't talk. How dare you. I'm hanging onto a last-minute reveal in the last episode and keeping hope on that front because come on.
Related image

The setting is also a little confusing. The comics are set in the sixties, but this is more a modern setting with severe retro vibes. Aesthetically it's really cool, but at times the more modern aspects feel out of place, or you start wondering why we aren't seeing more of them. 

The ick/elephant in the room: So here's my take on the Satanism/witchcraft portrayal. Honestly, it doesn't bother me, but I'm also familiar with the source material and not part of the affected groups. This show is a thousand times less dark than The Chilling Adventures comics, for one. It definitely leans into horror with religious tones, so if that bothers you, maybe skip this. It's all very overdone 1800s-ish dark fantasy Satanism, so to me it feels more fantasy oriented. I do like that the magic is more front and center vs a gimmick for adventures or clothes changes. 

Believe me, I love that about the original, but it wouldn't work here. By making the magic have bigger stakes and consequences (and look more serious), it grounds things in the universe a lot more. 

Honestly, the witchcraft aspect has always been a bit clunky. There's no great way to portray it, and it is a little convoluted. If Sabrina's half mortal, that should make witch a race but there are covens which are also called churches and...yeah. I can see where it's hard to know how to take it. My take is that the 90s show had the same problem in different ways, and it distanced itself from real-world aspects as much as it could and still caught flack for it. At some point, you need to turn your mind off and enjoy this for what it is. 

Other than that, there are gore and adult elements. Some work better for me than others. I loved the use of autopsy in Ambrose's dream sequence, the Feast of Feasts is unnerving, but a bit with an evil scarecrow didn't do much for me and looked too obviously CGI. Overall, though, the horror elements bring a creepiness to Greendale that we haven't seen before and emphasizes the divide Sabrina faces. 

But it's not like my Sabrina/the other elephant in the room - Guys. Come on. There's no definitive Sabrina. She started life as a comic character and has had many incarnations and evolutions. Life moves on past the 90s. It's fine to not like something or to prefer a version, but one version does not invalidate the other. That being said, I loved the Melissa Joan Hart show. And I love this show. If you pay attention, there are a lot of little tributes to the sitcom. The dream demon episode feels similar in structure to its predecessor but played straight. A lot of this show feels that way. 

Instead of Libby, we have the Weird Sisters. Instead of playing their codependency for laughs, Hilda and Zelda struggle with their relationship (boy howdy do they) and still have doomed attempts at dating. Rosalind And Suzie are great 2018 replacements for Jenny and Valerie. Nick is a more formidable evolution of Dashiell. Principal Hawthorne is very much a serious take on Mr. Kraft. Sabrina is still campaigning hard for good. Instead of pushing food drives and editorials on studying vs sports, she's focused on fair treatment of students, banned books, and saving the whole town from death. There are little things Kiernan Shipka does that takes me straight back to Melissa Joan Hart's mannerisms. Harvey is even called Farm Boy as an insult and multiple scenes take place at the kitchen counter. Little sequences have similar beats but played for different emotions. There are still plenty of fun moments and plenty of times I caught myself laughing. I honestly don't know if you could put the comics on the screen as is because if you think this is dark, oof. 

If anything, this blends the Chilling Adventures comics with the 90s sitcom and somehow makes it work. This is how to reboot (if you want to call it that) well. 

For me, personally, it finally feels like a franchise grew up with me from an adorkable teen into something that can mean well and not be afraid to be twisted. And that is amazing. Is it dark? Hells yeah. Is it different? Yes and no. Is it fun? If you like horror and can appreciate a different side to the characters, absolutely. 

4.5 sheep (let the cat talk and we'll discuss the rating)

About the Author:
Selah Janel is a writer who is trying to start doing that again instead of reading manga all the time.

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Alpha Male Diner: Darren, King of the Lycans by Candace Blackburn + giveaway

The door opens and you step in, walking immediately into a wall of muscle with a mustache, goatee and a scowl. Despite the scowl, you’re taken back by his physical presence. Until he leans down and sniffs you. Sniffs. You. You’re tempted to leave. Meeting supernatural royalty is not worth this magnitude of rudeness. 

“Liam! Front and center, now! Pat this girl down before she gets any further inside the door. I’ve got to pick up Elizabeth’s ice cream.”

You open your mouth to unleash every curse word you’ve ever learned when a set of long, jeans-clad legs descends the large staircase. He fills out his shirt (which makes lewd references to Thor’s Hammer) like he was poured into it. His smile is crazy sexy, and his red hair makes you officially a new member of Team Ginger. 

Huffing, he waves a hand. “Go. I’ve got this.” The scowler walks out the door muttering to himself. The sexy dude waves his hand toward the now closed door. “Sorry about that. Seems that we all tend to be assholes around here periodically. But, enough of that. I’m Darren. Welcome to our home.” 
Darren, King of the Lycans
Recipe created by Candace Blackburn
Return of the Lycan King: Darren and Cassandra (Book 3, Return of the Lycan King Series)

Foul-mouthed, Lycan King with a human mother
Body of a predator, yet he moves silently.
Red hair, grey eyes.
Legs that make his mate drool.

1.Take away human misconceptions.
2. Add newfound abilities, such as ability to control which parts of his body shifts.
3. Add ruling the Lycan Kingdom like a boss.
4. Worship his Queen, both in and out of the bedroom.
5. Combine all ingredients and watch the Alpha develop.

Serving Size: One King, approximately 6’2”, accompanied by his curvy Queen. Often served with growls of the sexual nature. And pecan pie, which, other than Cass, is the King’s favorite dish.

Taste Test
She removed her pants, tossing them to the side, keeping her gaze firmly fixed on his. She repeated the motion with her shirt, and, damn. The sight of this woman laying so invitingly on the bed, clad in tiny scraps of lace almost caused Darren to spill himself in his pants.

At this point, I won't last two thrusts.

Darren lifted her ankle and placed a kiss on her foot. Cass sucked in a breath.

"I...I didn't realize that was an erogenous zone."

"Princess, I'm going to find them all before we leave this room."

by Candace Blackburn 
October 29, 2018
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Candace Blackburn 
Format: Digital eBook
Digital ISBN: 1-7328151-0-0
Darren chases Cass to Ireland, determined to make up for his mistakes. When they return to North Carolina to build their lives together, nothing is the same. Darren has already fought to convince Cass to give him a chance, but a new Monarchy is just the beginning of the changes to the Lycan Kingdom. Secrets and challenges to Darren's crown emerge, and his inner circle closes ranks, to protect their Kingdom, and to make sure the newly-returned Lycan King keeps his crown.

About the Author:
Return of the Lycan King: Darren and Cassandra is the fifth published book by Candace Blackburn, and the third in the ROTLK series. She is a lifelong avid reader, and discovered the love of putting pen to paper at a young age. She’s married to her best friend, and father of their two boys. Candace is also a puppy mom to the world’s loudest, barkiest, most spoiled Min Pin on the planet.

Currently working on what will be the sixth published novel (Dante’s story), she has plans to attend her first book conference as an author!

$25 Amazon Gift Card

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

The Stormbourne Chronicles by Karissa Laurel: Lighting, Espionage, Magic—The Epic Series Conclusion

Lighting, Espionage, Magic—The Epic Series Conclusion
"Stormbourne Chronicles" series of young adult fantasies, where you’ll discover an extraordinary new world, epic adventure, and memorable characters.

Grab book one, Heir of Thunder

Heir of Thunder: A Young Adult Steampunk Fantasy (Stormbourne Chronicles Book 1)
by Karissa Laurel
September 24, 2016
238 pages
The Lord of Thunder has passed, leaving daughter Evelyn Stormbourne to overcome her kingdom’s greatest enemies, but first she must embrace her dominion over the sky.

“’s got swords and horses and dirigibles and pirates and magic and caravans. A fun mix of Lord of the Rings-type high fantasy and steampunkish tech (did I mention there are dirigibles??), blended into a delightful Europe-inspired universe that feels at once new and familiar. ... All in all, this was a delightful read and just the kind of heroine-centric fantasy adventure I’ve always loved.” ~ Mary Fan

The Lord of Thunder’s sudden death leaves his daughter, Evelyn Stormbourne, unprepared to rule Inselgrau in his place. Weeks before Evie’s ascension to the throne, revolutionaries attack and destroy her home. She conceals her identity and escapes under the protection of her father’s young horse master, Gideon Faust. Together they flee Inselgrau and set sail for the Continent, but they’re separated when a brutal storm washes Evie overboard.

In her efforts to reunite with her protector and reach allies on the Continent, Evie befriends a band of nomads who roam the world in airships fueled by lightning. She also confronts a cabal of dark Magicians plotting to use her powers to create a new divine being, and she clashes with an ancient family who insists her birthright belongs to them.

If she’s to prevail and defeat her enemies, Evie must claim her heritage, embrace her dominion over the sky, and define what it means to be Heir of Thunder.

Evolved Publishing presents the first book in the "Stormbourne Chronicles" series of young adult fantasies, where you’ll discover an extraordinary new world, epic adventure, and memorable characters.

About the Author:
Karissa lives in North Carolina with her kid, her husband, the occasional in-law, and a very hairy husky. Some of her favorite things are coffee, chocolate, and super heroes. She can quote Princess Bride verbatim. She loves to read and has a sweet tooth for fantasy, sci-fi, and anything in between. Sometimes her husband convinces her to put down the books and take the motorcycles out for a spin. When it snows, you'll find her on the slopes.

Find out more about Karissa and keep up to date with new releases, including the sequel to Midnight Burning, coming in 2016.

Book Review: Evil’s Ultimate Huntress (An Alexis Black Novel: Book Two) by Jenn Windrow

Evil’s Ultimate Huntress (An Alexis Black Novel: Book Two)
by Jenn Windrow
November 5, 2018
284 pages
Vampire Alexis Black just wanted to be human again. Now she just wants to stay alive… and undead.

After Alexis tried and failed to kill Delano Melazi, an ancient bloodsucker hell-bent on revenge, he’s been trying to repay the favor one pointy-toothed minion at a time. An army of undead intent on stalking and staking her.

She spends every night with her rag-tag duo trying to send those monsters to an ashy grave. The only positive—their deaths fulfill the kill-or-end-up-dead contract she’s still stuck in.

But Delano is small veins compared to the latest complication in her life…her twin brother Andre. A Brother who now leads her enemy’s army.

Now Alexis has a new mission—save Andre by finding his last spark of humanity or follow orders and do what she does best…kill vampires.

Evil’s Ultimate Huntress is the thrilling follow up to the series starter, Evil’s Unlikely Assassin. I love this series and its kick ass vampire heroine Alexis Black. The series is an urban fantasy set in Chicago. Alexis is a vampire attempting to buy back her humanity by dispatching evil-doers. As per an angelic contract, Alexis must kill one monstrous creature per night for the duration of her term. In the end, she will be granted her humanity; a precious commodity stolen from Alexis without her consent. And so, the formidable vampire slashes her way through Chicago on a heavenly mission.

In this installment of the series, Alexi’s sire has returned to Chicago to collect his progeny. Alexis, however, detests her maker and has no intention of doing his bidding. But when she discovers her sire has her twin brother Andre in tow, the stakes are insurmountably raised. What unfolds is an action-packed suspenseful ride into the seedy underbelly of vampire politics.

Part of what makes this series such a winner is the cast of characters along for the ride. The soul of Vlad Tepes, the father of all vampires, has been implanted into Alexis. While she needs to share her body with Vlad, she also benefits from the centuries-old power within. Alexis also has a human partner, Reaper, a military-trained, hard-nosed guy with whom she’s formed an uneasy bond. There’s also Alexis’s love interest, scientist/shifter Julian who adds a steamy romantic element to the story. My favourite character, though, is Alexis’s vampire best friend turned ghost, Nathan. I love his quirky personality and childish sense of humour. Together, the group forms a tight-knit force to be reckoned with.

I highly recommend Alexis Black to urban fantasy fans. The series is well-crafted and highly entertaining. Spend some time with Alexis and her crew, you won’t be disappointed.

Review: Evil’s Unlikely Assassin (Alexis Black #1)

Five Sheep

Bianca Greenwood

About the Author:
Jenn Windrow loves characters that have a pinch of spunk, a dash of attitude, and a large dollop of sex appeal. Top it all off with a huge heaping helping of snark, and you've got the ingredients for the kind of fast-paced stories she loves to read and write. Home is a suburb of it's-so-hot-my-shoes-have-melted-to-the-pavement Phoenix. Where she lives with her husband, two daughters, and a slew of animals that seem to keep following her home, at least that's what she claims.

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Merry Christmas from I Smell Sheep and Optimus Prime

I asked our staff to send a pic of their favorite holiday decoration. Guest reviewer Selah Janel (our manga reading queen) wins for the nerdiest holiday decoration!

Selah Janel's Christmas
Christmas decorations have always been a mix at my house. Some are traditional, some are newer, some are handmade, and some are, how shall we say, improvisational. 
Backstory: having a minister in the family can open one up to all sorts of experiences, one of which might be having a giant, mega-sized nativity scene that would rival some playsets from the 1980s. And because The Sibling and I tend to amuse ourselves in creative ways, there has been a long stretch of years where we felt the need to…enhance things. 

I don’t really remember how this started, and to our credit, it probably would’ve stopped long ago if some people would stop bringing it up every year, but for a long stretch of time, sneaking things into the manger scene was tradition. It's become a game to see how fast we can sneak things in and how far we can push things before the Traditional Christmas Lecture. We've done everything from Barbie accessories to clones to pirates to Krampus and figures from Rembrandt paintings.
 Yes, okay, we’re very mischievous and we’ve heard about this more than once, but who are we to fight with tradition at this point? It’s dropped off a bit over the years as we’ve gotten busy, but at least we still have photos. 
Did I mention we had a lot of Star Wars figures growing up? You can see where this is going. 
I can't stress how big this thing is. It's not just the nativity, but the wise men's tent, a village, and the Roman temple. And there are plenty of places to hide inhabitants. 

Don't worry, we did it to my mother's Christmas village at one point, too. 

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and an Excellent New Year to all!

Katie Dalton's Christmas

This one is special because I got it the year my mom passed away and she also used to collect sand dollars along the beach
This ornament is also special because it's seven of nine for star trek voyager and she's one of my favorite characters.

Pamela Kinney
The Christmas wreath I made last year that is hanging on our door. The photo doesn't show the star/bell hanging from the bottom of it too.

Adria Reyes
This is my favorite Christmas decoration. It changes colors. We bought it at a fundraiser when my husband & I were first married.

Sharon Stogner
I love my Christmas tree. All the ornaments (I have hundreds) have a meaning. My grandma use to make ornaments and I always get an ornament whenever I visit somewhere. The last one was from Philidelphia, PA...the Liberty Bell. I also have all the Lenox snowflakes released since 1993 when they started.