Christmas: T minus 27 days and counting: Christmas Heroes and give away.

Please welcome Julieanne Reeves to the ‘vert today!

Christmas is a mere 27 days away. While most of us are just getting into the swing of Christmas, Public Safety personnel in Payson, Arizona—the real life counterpart to the fictional setting for my novel, Razing Kayne—have been working on Christmas all year long.






For nearly two decades police and fire personnel, along with other public safety associations in, and around, Payson, have been raising funds for needy children. During the summer they host a golf tournament, commencing with a steak dinner and officer auction, and ending with a spirited antic-filled game of golf. Clubs and organizations hold fundraisers and sell raffle tickets. This year will mark the 24th year of Tamale’s for Toys. Three-thousand tamales will be made by volunteers within the public safety community and sold at the event. And the list goes on; all this to ensure that every child in the community is visited by Santa.

Last year Public Safety Christmas For Kids provided Christmas for nearly 300 children in a community of approximately 20,000 residents. But for the brave men and women – our every-day heroes – Christmas doesn’t end at fundraising. Once the money’s been raised, and the children chosen, is when the real fun begins. Each child/family is paired up with one of Santa’s uniform-wearing elves, and they take to the aisles to shop.





Last year each child received more than $50 in needed clothes shoes and toys. To many of us $50 is the price of a video console game for one of our kids; to these children it’s just short of a miracle. To the men and women wearing the uniform, these moments are unforgettable.
I’ve had the privilege of participating in some of these events in years past, and I can honestly tell you there is nothing more beautiful than the smile on the face of a child who benefits from programs such as these or the matching one on an officer’s face as the interact with these precious children.
Thankfully this type of program is not limited to hometowns like Payson. Police and Fire departments around the nation, in cities big and small, participate in brining Christmas to children in need. So, during this holiday season as you’re out fulfilling your own Santa’s list, I hope you take a moment to grab an extra toy or two and drop it by your local police or fire station. If you’d like to make a monetary donation simply look up the NON-emergency administration number for your local police or fire department, and they’ll be able to put you in contact with the right person. And if you know of a child or family in need, please get them in contact with that person as well.

Now for the giveaway: What is something you and your family do to get into the Christmas spirit? Leave a message below. I’m giving away two e-books of Razing Kayne, the first book in my Walking a Thin Blue Line police series (ah, see, there’s the tie-in)


Blurb: For two years, State Trooper Kayne Dobrescu has wanted only one thing: to understand why his wife inexplicably killed their children and then herself. Memories haunt his days and lay siege to his nights, leaving him questioning his reasons for living.

Jessica Hallstatt became a widow and single mother the night her firefighter husband died in a fiery explosion at an accident scene. While her husband may have died a hero, he left Jessica with deep emotional scars that haven’t begun to heal.

When Kayne accepted a transfer to the mountain town of Payson, Arizona, he never expected to meet anyone like Jessica. From the moment he pulled her over for speeding, he was drawn in by her whiskey-colored eyes and sassy dimple. He knows she and her children are a forever type package, and he’s vowed never to give anyone the power to destroy him again. Yet fate has other ideas, throwing Kayne and Jessica together in a fight against an unknown enemy to save the life of a child—and hopefully one another.


The author: Julieanne Reeves is a third generation Arizonan with a background in Police-Fire-911 Communications. When she’s not spending time spoiling her two wonderful children, she enjoys reading and writing steamy romantic suspense. Having had the privilege of working with some of the finest Law Enforcement Officers in the nation, it’s little wonder her heroes carry a firearm and badge. Julieanne currently lives in the Phoenix-Metro area, but hopes to one day return to the mountain town that inspired her Walking A Thin Blue Line series.


Buy the book here RAZING KAYNE


About cindygerard

Cindy Gerard is a New York Times best-selling author of action packed romantic suspense novels. Learn more about Cindy at
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30 Responses to Christmas: T minus 27 days and counting: Christmas Heroes and give away.

  1. Kathleen O says:

    It is wonderful what this town does for it’s children who are in need of a Christmas. One of the charaties our family always give to is the Salavation Army. We do it in many ways. Money is given to them annual at Christmas and something that has been a tradition in our family, started with my grandmother, was to make up a Christmas hamper filled with a turkey, ham and all the fixings for a Christamas dinner. Chocolates and other goodies go into. Then we ask the Salavation Army for a family and we deliver this to them, but always in seceret like Santa. Even when my mother was sick and in the nursing home she made sure we did this. And now that both my mother and grandmother are gone. I will continue this tradition with my nieces and nephews.. And I always make sure I donate to our Toys for Tots before I buy any other Christmas presents. It’s not much, but I give where I can. I can never pass up the Salavation Army Christmas pots in the malls and stores. That is what Christmas is all about, the Spirit of Giving…

  2. southerngirl says:

    Here where I live we have Shop-With-A-Cop. Policemen & women are paired up with a child in need and they go shopping. The child picks out what he or she wants. And a lot of the different fire departments pick a needy family or child and show up at their house on Christmas Eve with gifts for them. Lots of times it’s a family that lost their home and things in a fire. We have 27 fire stations in the county I live in & only a couple of them pay the firemen. All of the others are volunteers. And there are several other programs here that do great things for people in need. My family likes to pick a child or children from the Salvation Army Angel tree. The little paper angel ornament has the child’s age, sizes & things that she or he wants and needs.

  3. Heather M says:

    Thank you for sharing with us! I knew that police a firefighters did toy drives, I didn’t realize they had the Christmas spirit all year long! My holiday tradition started a few years ago with an old roommate. We went Christmas shopping and then the night before we were heading to our destination for the holidays, we would have a “wrapping party”. We invited our other friends over, listened to all the crazy Christmas carols and drank lots of wine, all why wrapping presents. Then we all go our separate ways to our home’s for the holiday. My personal tradition is that I watch 24 hours of A Christmas Story every Christmas Eve and Christmas Day!

    Thank you for sharing Razing Kayne with us! It is definitely on my shopping list for gifts this year!

  4. lisoo says:

    Tamales for toys. What a great idea. Nice reminder post.
    Merry Christmas to you all.

    • Yes, a very awesome lady started the tradition 24 years ago. She’s since retired from doing it, but it’s been taken over by members of the law enforcement community, and the spirit and tradition will continue long into the future, I hope. And the tamales are AWESOME. Which reminds me I need to place an order for a few dozen. *grin*

  5. Cindy Gerard says:

    Hi Julieanne! And welcome to the vert. Everyone out there – check out the 5 star reviews of RAZING KAYNE on Good reads and Amazon. Yowser! People are loving this book

    • Thanks, Cindy! I’m so happy to be here, and a little overwhelmed by the outpouring of love for Razing Kayne.

      One thing I forgot to mention: From Nov 20, 2012 to Feb 19, 2013 20% of net proceeds from e-book sales of RAZING KAYNE go to Payson Community Kids, a non-profit outreach program for “at risk” youth in Payson, Az.

  6. Claudia Dreythaller says:

    This book sounds like a must-have to me!!

  7. loisgreiman says:

    Cookies. I try to get together with friends and family and bake. Ahhhh, nothing says Christmas like an overdose of sugar.

    Congrats on the new book. It sounds wonderful.

    • Lois, we just finished baking and frosting 23 dozen cookies Sunday. With six kids – and one cookie thief – under the age of 12. Well the cookie thief wasn’t under 12, he just acts like it. 😉

  8. First of all Razing Kayne is Awesome!! Anyone who hasn’t bought it run, do not walk, to buy it! Especially knowing the proceeds are being donated to such a worthy cause!
    Our neighborhood has a holiday volunteer program called The Angel Project. The neighbors take paper angels from a Christmas Tree, and buy gifts for the child listed. it has age, sizes, and wish list. I have volunteered our home for a drop off point for the gifts, and there taking over our house!

  9. Welcome, Julie!
    People really can be saintly, can’t they?
    After I publicly pshaw-ed about lining up on Thanksgiving eve for Black Friday bargains, I was humbled by a picture in the paper of a man who’d set his chair near the head of the line to wait for a store’s doors to open because he shops every year for toys for charity. That’s sacrificing twice over–time and treasure–which adds up to sainthood in my book. After a nasty election season, I love these heartwarming real people stories!

  10. What a wonderful post—and a great reminder about those in need. I love all the comments about other caring organizations and individuals. I’ve always loved taking a number of those slips of paper from an angel tree to buy gifts for someone in need….though I wish I could take every last one of them. Some of the requests are just heartbreaking–shoes, a hat, warm mittens–when you think about how much kids from more affluent homes want. 😦

    • I agree, Roxanne. It breaks my heart to see children asking for necessities of life from Santa. The outreach program I mention Payson Community Kids is a true godsend. The woman who started it should be sainted. She was a wonderful lady who’s no longer with us– she left this earth far too soon, but she will never be forgotten. Marcy was a true example of the fact that one person really can make a difference. PCK started out in the basement of her home with a handful of children and a goal that no child would go hungry or unclothed in Payson. Today it has it’s own address and a child-center and services more than 150 children. I wish every town, city and community had a Marcy and PCK in it.

  11. Lisa w says:

    I always take my kids shopping for Toys for Tots. Now that they are getting older, they are actually using their money! The local radio station also does a shoe & coat drive that we help with.

  12. Quilt Lady says:

    What a great post, I love what they do for these kids. Around here they have a Toys for Tots program. Different places take up new toys and they are given to children in need. My husband work collected toys last year and I sent some in. They also have a food back program to donate food to. They use to have you put food in your mail box and the postal service would pick it up.

    • Thank you. I remember the post office drives. I hadn’t realized they’d quit doing that until you mentioned it. I guess for security reasons they would have to. (There’s no way to ensure a 15.x ounce can of green beans is really green beans and not an improvised explosive device.) 😦

  13. Steph99 says:

    Hey, Julieanne, what an awesome program this is! I’m not familiar with similar programs we have here (though I’m sure there are some). We always donate to the Marines Toys for Tots program. Something else we do is the Christmas Shoe Box program run by Samaritan’s Purse. We choose a child (boy or girl and the age range) and fill a shoe box with toys and needed items like toothbrushes or socks. We do 2 boxes, one for a boy and one for girl, so both my kids choose items and prepare a box for their own child. The boxes are then hand delivered by Samaritan’s Purse to children all over world who basically have nothing. It’s an awesome program.

    I love Razing Kayne, and recommend it to anyone who loves a good romantic suspense! 🙂

    • I’m so glad you loved Razing Kayne. Every area has different programs. I love the Samaritan boxes. Our church does blankets for the Children’s crisis centers at least once a year. It’s such a great feeling to be able to give.

  14. MaryC says:

    There are so many organizations in the area that do Holiday drives, it’s difficult to choose. In addition to the USO and Toy For Tots, we select slips from the angel tree.

  15. The company that I work for always pairs up with the local Catholic Charities office to provide gifts for children that would not normally be receiving Christmas presents. Depending on the year, I will pick one or two children, around the same ages as my children, and I will take them with me to purchase gifts for them. This really puts all of us in the spirit of Christmas. The other thing that I will do personally, is make sure that when I go shopping I have dollar bills with me to put in the Salvation Army kettles that I pass during the day.

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