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The Holiday Blog Tour 2013 kicks off today! Chin! As usual, I’m running last minute putting it together, revising, and posting. My usual modus operandi, as I tend to juggle while multi-tasking. This is not to say that I don’t thoroughly enjoy participating in this tour every holiday season since its inception three years ago! Tour founder, Icess Fernandez Rojas, always succeeds in bringing a group of talented bloggers/writers from all walks of life and genres. You will not be disappointed! Take a look at the slate of participants below. Follow the tour, share with friends and followers, and leave a comment or two… you might even win a gift or two, as it has been known to happen.

Happy Holidays | ¡Felices Fiestas!

One of my favorite holiday stories is the miracle of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Last Thursday, December 12, Mexicans, Mexican-Americans, Catholics and others, celebrated el día de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, “La Virgen Morena”, the Brown-Skinned Virgin. Her story continues to offer comfort, serenity, and strength through struggles and hardships, as many can identify with the Aztec villager, Juan Diego, and his self-doubt and embarrassment for not having enough affluence and influence to convince the bishop to build a church on Tepeyac Hill. We learn that it isn’t about affluence or influence… it’s about faith. The confidence and trust we have in ourselves to persevere through our struggles and hardships.

I’d like to share here a few words from a favorite children’s book about Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, The Beautiful Lady Our Lady of Guadalupe by Pat Mora, illustrated by Steve Johnson & Lou Fancher.

Juan Diego started down the dirt path. He was a good man and wanted to do as the Lady asked, but he didn’t know the bishop, who was a very important man. When Juan Diego arrived at the palace, many people were waiting to speak to the bishop. Juan Diego stood quietly. He waited, and waited, and waited.

            “I don’t want to disappoint the beautiful Señora,” thought Juan Diego. Finally, it was his turn to say a few words to the bishop. The bishop listened. He thought. But then he said he needed a sign, proof from la hermosa Señora.

            … Juan Diego looked down sadly. “Ay, Señora, I feel embarrassed,” he said. “The bishop asked for a sign from you. Maybe you should ask a rich and important person to talk to the bishop. I am a poor man and have no influence.”

            The kind Lady smiled. “Juanito,” she said, “you are a good man. I want you to go speak to the bishop again and ask him to build my church. Here. On this hill.”

The church was built! The original basilica was completed in 1709, replacing previous churches at the site. And in 1976 a modern basilica of Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe opened.

So as the holidays fast approach and the juggling intensifies… give yourself a break, make a pot of Chocolate Abuelita, pour yourself a mug, grab your favorite manto and wrap yourself warmly, then sit in your comfy chair to read your favorite children’s book, as you are never too old for storytime. Breathe deeply, take perspective, and continue on.

What is your favorite holiday children’s book? Share the title and author in the comments section with us for a chance to win another cultural children’s book.

And please continue following the tour, there will be many more stories to enjoy, giving you a few minutes to catch your breath.


Holiday Blog Tour 2013 Slate

Dec. 16 | Teresa Carbajal Ravet | SententiaVera.com

Dec. 17 |Nathasha Alvarez |Audaciouslady.com

Dec. 18 |Natasha Oliver | Peace and Center

Dec. 19 | Nikki Kallio | More Purple Houses

Dec. 20 | Lupe Mendez | The Poet Mendez

Dec. 21 | Anabel Lucio Morales | My Meandering Thoughts

Dec. 22 | Icess Fernandez Rojas | IcessFernandez.com

Dec. 23 | Regina Tingle | ReginaTingle.com


Random House Childrens Books

Random House Childrens Books


The Beautiful Lady: Our Lady of Guadalupe

By Pat Mora

Illustrated by Steve Johnson / Lou Fancher

ISBN 9780375868382

La hermosa Señora: Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe

By Pat Mora

Translated by Adriana Dominguez

Illustrated by Steve Johnson / Lou Fancher

ISBN 9780375868405