Guest Authors,  Liz Flaherty

Author Spotlight: Bestie Liz Flaherty Shares Wishes and Memories

We have a winner! Congratulations Jennifer Wilck! You are the winner of Liz’s giveaway. She will be in touch with you! Thanks to everyone who stopped by and shared their holiday memories! Happy Holidays! 

I adore having my bestie on the blog–her voice is what drew me to her over ten years ago and she has been a gift in my life ever since.

USA Today bestselling author Liz Flaherty started writing in the fourth grade when her Aunt Gladys allowed her to use her portable Royal typewriter. The truth was that her aunt would have let her do anything to get her out of her hair, but the typewriter and the stories it could produce caught on, and Liz never again had a day without a what if… in it.

She and Duane, her husband of at least forever, live in a farmhouse in central Indiana, sharing grown children, spoiled cats, and their grandkids, the Magnificent Seven. You can find her at

Giveaway from Liz: If you’d like to share a memory here, I’m going to give away an after-Christmas present to one of you. I’m not sure what the gift is—although I’d guarantee there’s a book in there somewhere—but hopefully it will include a nice memory, too.

Wishes and Memories

I don’t really have Christmas wishes anymore, do you? Our family has spread out so much that it’s impossible for us to all be together—which I admit would be my real wish—and my husband and I don’t need anything. Our Christmas shopping has changed remarkably in recent years, including lots of gift cards and money tucked into envelopes. The only toys we buy are ones for children we don’t know.

But I’ve learned something this year. Nan’s beautiful blog, my own Window Over the Sink, and numerous others have shared holiday posts through the season. I read them every single day, laughing and sniffling a bit and sharing links to posts I particularly liked. What a gift it has been sharing the memories others write about.

And calling up my own from that pocket in my heart where I keep them.

I think about the Christmas Eve we drove home in the snow and several deer crossed the road in front of us. We were going slow enough that no one was scared, but I think we were all watching for a sleigh to be following the animals—even though they were whitetail and not reindeer. Our three kids were mesmerized in the backseat. Duane and I were no less so in the front.

I remember the Christmas Eve I made my daughter’s Holly Hobby dress on a terrible old sewing machine while my new one sat wrapped under the tree. I think I knew it was there, and Duane would have let me open it, but we were Christmas morning people; I needed to open it then. So he sat at the table with me until two in the morning, when he wrapped the finished dress and we fell into bed only to be awakened three hours later by the three who’d slept through Santa’s long visit.

We’d been married a year and a half when I got an engagement ring for Christmas. I’d worn his class ring on a chain around my neck when we actually were engaged—we couldn’t afford the ring then.

There was the Christmas when our daughter and son-in-law spent their entire Christmas fortune on ping-pong ball guns for everyone in the family. We had a full half hour of laughing, shrieking hilarity, punctuated by our seven-year-old granddaughter’s boast that “I’ve got balls and I’m not afraid to use them!”

I think it was July after that Christmas that I found a ping-pong ball under the couch. I probably shouldn’t admit that. Over twenty years later, we still talk about that Christmas and remind our granddaughter of her courage in the face of adversity. And we laugh again.

I remember the candlelight and the glimmering joy of Christmas Eve church services, the Little Golden Books my brother gave me one Christmas, the copy of Freckles I received another year. I remember the first (of many) times I’ve seen my favorite Christmas movies.

That’s why I don’t have Christmas wishes anymore. Because all of those wishes I didn’t know I had have come true already, and every time I think of them, it’s like receiving those gifts one more time. When others share their memories, those are gifts, too.

Merry Christmas!



  • Liz Flaherty

    Jennifer Wilck was the winner of the present, which I will get sent out next week. My thanks to everyone who stopped by to talk and to Nan for having me here. Blessed Holidays to you all.

  • Debra Pruss

    In December my then boyfriend and I decided to have a Christmas party. During the Christmas party, my “boyfriend” had me sit by the Christmas tree. He knelt down on one knee and asked me to marry him in front of our guests. I would have to say, it was one of my best Christmas gifts. Thank you for sharing. God bless you. Merry Christmas.

  • Debra Jo Myers

    I also love the opening quote – and that we don’t really need anything anymore other than our families with us. We did a similar thing with stuffed snowballs and launchers like your ping pong balls. It was a great time and everyone of all ages could participate. Thanks for sharing memories – after all, we all have them! Merry Christmas to you and Duane!

  • Barbara Bettis

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful memories, Liz. Here’s to remembering and to making more! Have a wonderful Christmas.

  • Roseann McGrath Brooks

    I have to admit I did a bit of sniffling when reading this blog: “All of those wishes I didn’t know I had have come true already” — I’m putting that on a sticky note next to my computer! My favorite Christmas memory is the first year with our adopted children, ages 5 and 3 at the time. They claimed, in Spanish, that they understood the concept of Santa, but they clearly didn’t. They awoke at 10 a.m. (first and last time for that!). I’ll never forget the sound of footie PJs on the carpet, slow as they first wandered into the living room and then speedy as they ran back to our bedroom to wave frantically for us to join in seeing what had occurred overnight. Precious.

    • Liz Flaherty

      Oh, Roseann, what a memory! I felt it all the way down to my toes when you told the story! Pure innocence isn’t something we get to see all that often. Merry Christmas!

  • Janie DeVos

    Such a heartfelt blog, as usual, Liz. The amazing thing is those wishes were ones you didn’t know you had. Wonder what this year’s Christmas wishes are? Guess you’ll find out on Christmas. Blessings, love and peace to you and Nan, and your families, of course.