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1225 Christmas Tree Lane (Cedar Cove Series #12) (Including the Short Story Let It Snow)

1225 Christmas Tree Lane (Cedar Cove Series #12) (Including the Short Story Let It Snow)

4.1 341
by Debbie Macomber

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The people of Cedar Cove know how to celebrate Christmas. Like Grace and Olivia and everyone else, Beth Morehouse expects this Christmas to be one of her best. Her small Christmas tree farm is prospering, her daughters and her dogs are happy and well, and her new relationship with local vet Ted Reynolds is showing plenty of romantic


The people of Cedar Cove know how to celebrate Christmas. Like Grace and Olivia and everyone else, Beth Morehouse expects this Christmas to be one of her best. Her small Christmas tree farm is prospering, her daughters and her dogs are happy and well, and her new relationship with local vet Ted Reynolds is showing plenty of romantic promise.

But…someone recently left a basket filled with puppies on her doorstep, puppies she's determined to place in good homes. That's complication number one. And number two is that her daughters, Bailey and Sophie, have invited their dad, Beth's long-divorced husband, Kent, to Cedar Cove for Christmas. The girls have visions of a mom-and-dad reunion dancing in their heads.

As always in life—and in Cedar Cove—there are surprises, too. More than one family's going to have a puppy under the tree. More than one scheme will go awry. And more than one romance will have a happy ending!

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Macomber's 12th book in the Cedar Cove series is as warm and sweet as a cup of cocoa with extra marshmallows." - RT Book REviews on 1225 CHRISTMAS TREE LANE

"It's just not Christmas without a Debbie Macomber story..." —Writers Unlimited on A Cedar Cove Christmas

"Macomber deftly combines sweet romance and a breath of suspense without losing the homespun charm that's been delighting readers for years."

-RT Book Reviews on 92 Pacific Boulevard

"Readers new to Macomber's considerable narrative charms will have no problem picking up the story, while loyal fans are in for a treat."

-Booklist on 6 Rainier Drive

"Debbie Macomber is a skilled storyteller."

-Publishers Weekly on 50 Harbor Street

"The books in Macomber's contemporary Cedar Cove series are irresistibly delicious and addictive."

-Publishers Weekly on 44 Cranberry Point

"Excellent characterization will keep readers anticipating the next visit to Cedar Cove."

-Booklist on 311 Pelican Court

"Macomber's endearing characters offer courage and support to one another and find hope and love in the most unexpected places."

-Booklist on 204 Rosewood Lane

"Macomber is known for her honest portrayals of ordinary women in small-town America, and this tale cements her position as an icon of the genre."

-Publishers Weekly on 16 Lighthouse Road

Product Details

Publication date:
Cedar Cove Series , #12
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
4.10(w) x 6.50(h) x 1.20(d)

Read an Excerpt


The front door slammed and Beth Morehouse hurried out of the kitchen. Three days before Christmas, and her daughters were home from college—at last! Her foreman, Jeff, had been kind enough to pick them up at the airport while Beth dealt with last-minute chores. She'd been looking forward to seeing them for weeks. Throwing her arms wide, she ran toward Bailey and Sophie. "Merry Christmas, girls."

Squealing with delight, they dropped their bags and rushed into her embrace.

"I can't believe it's snowing. It's so beautiful," Bailey said, holding Beth in a tight hug. At twenty-one, she was the oldest by fourteen months. She resembled her father in so many ways. She was tall like Kent and had his dark brown hair, which she'd tucked under a knitted cap. Her eyes shone with a quiet joy. She was the thoughtful one and that, too, reminded Beth of her ex-husband. Three years after the divorce, she still missed him, although pride would never allow her to admit that. Even her budding relationship with Ted Reynolds, the local veterinarian, paled when she thought about her life with Kent and their history together.

"My turn." Displacing Bailey, Sophie snuggled into Beth's embrace. "The house looks fabulous, Mom. Really Christmassy." This child was more like Beth. A few inches shorter than her sister, Sophie had curly auburn hair and eyes so blue they seemed to reflect a summer sky. Releasing Beth, Sophie added, "And it smells wonderful."

Beth had done her best to make the house as festive and bright as possible for her daughters. She'd spent long hours draping fresh evergreen boughs on the staircase leading to the second-floor bedrooms. Two of the three Christmas trees were loaded with ornaments. The main tree in the family room was still bare, awaiting their arrival so they could decorate it together, which was a family tradition.

A trio of four-foot-tall snowmen stood guard in the hallway near the family room where the Nativity scene was displayed on the fireplace mantel. Decorating had helped take Beth's mind off the fact that her ex-husband would be joining them for Christmas. This would be the first time she'd seen him in three years. Oh, they'd spoken often enough, but every conversation had revolved around their daughters. Nothing else. No questions asked. No comments of a personal nature. Just the girls and only the girls. It'd been strictly business. Until now.

Until Christmas.

They both loved the holidays. It was Kent who'd first suggested they have several Christmas trees. Always fresh ones, which was one reason Beth had been attracted to the Christmas tree farm when she started her new life.

"I've got lunch ready," Beth said, trying to turn her attention away from her ex-husband. He still lived in California, as did the girls. He'd stayed in their hometown of Sacramento, while Bailey and Sophie both attended university in San Diego. According to their daughters, Kent had asked to come for Christmas. She'd known for almost two weeks that he'd made reservations at the Thyme and Tide B and B in Cedar Cove. The news that he'd be in town had initially come as a shock to Beth. He hadn't discussed it with her at all. Instead, he'd had their daughters do his talking for him. That made everything more awkward, because it wasn't as if she could refuse, not with Bailey and Sophie so excited about spending Christmas together as a family. But Kent's plans had left her with a host of unanswered questions. Was this his way of telling Beth he missed her? Was he looking for a reconciliation? Was she? The questions swarmed in her head, but the answers wouldn't be clear until he arrived. At least she'd be better able to judge his reasons. His intentions. And her own…

"Just like it used to be," Bailey finished. Beth had missed whatever she'd said before that, although it wasn't hard to guess.

Just like it used to be. These were magic words, but Beth had recognized long ago that the clock only moved forward. Yet the girls' eagerness, Kent's apparent insistence and her nostalgia for what they'd once shared swept aside her customary reserve.

"Mom?" Bailey said when she didn't respond. "We're talking…. Where are you?"

Beth gave a quick shake of her head. "Woolgathering. Sorry. I haven't had much sleep lately." Exhausted as she was, managing the tree farm and getting ready for Christmas with her daughters—and Kent—she'd hardly slept. She couldn't. Every time she closed her eyes, Kent was there. Kent with his boyish smile and his eyes twinkling with mischief and fun. They'd been happy once and somehow they'd lost that and so much more. Beth had never been able to put her finger on what exactly had gone wrong; she only knew that it had. In the end they'd lived separate lives, going their own ways. Their daughters had kept them together—and then they were off at college, and suddenly it was just Kent and Beth. That was when they discovered they no longer had anything in common.

"You're not sleeping?" Bailey's eyes widened with concern.

Sophie elbowed her sister. "Bailey, think about it. This is the busiest time of year for a Christmas tree farm. Then there's all this decorating. And, if we're really lucky—"

"Mom made date candy?" Bailey cut in.

"And caramel corn?" Sophie asked hopefully, hands folded in prayer.

"Yes to you both. It wouldn't be Christmas without our special treats."

"You're the best mom in the world."

Beth smiled. She'd had less than three hours' sleep, thanks to all the Christmas preparations, her dogs and…her incessant memories of Kent. Traffic at the tree farm had thinned out now that Christmas was only three days away. But families were still stopping by and there was quite a bit to do, including cleanup. Her ten-man crew was down to four and they'd coped just fine without either her or Jeff this morning. While he drove out to the airport, she'd been getting ready for her daughters' arrival. However, as soon as lunch was over, she needed to head back outside.

Beth and the girls had booked a skiing trip between Christmas and New Year's, and after the hectic schedule of the past two months, she was counting on a few relaxing days with her daughters. Their reservations were made and she was eager to go. Ted Reynolds, good friend that he was, had offered to take care of her animals, which reminded her of the one hitch in her perfectly planned holiday escape.

"Before we sit down to eat, I need to tell you we have special guests this Christmas."

"You mean Dad, right?" Bailey led the way into the other room, where there was more greenery and a beautifully arranged table with three place settings.

"Well, yes, your father. But he's not the only one…

"Mom." Bailey tensed as she spoke. "Don't tell me you have a boyfriend. It's that vet, isn't it?"

"Ten guests, actually," she said, ignoring the comment about Ted, "and they aren't all boys."

"Puppies?" Sophie guessed.

"Puppies," Beth confirmed, not surprised that her daughter had figured it out. "Ten of them."

"Ten?" Sophie cried, aghast.

Without asking, Bailey went straight to the laundry room off the kitchen. "Where did you get ten puppies?" The instant she opened the door, all ten black puppies scampered into the kitchen, scrambling about, skidding across the polished hardwood floor.

"They're adorable." Sharing Beth's love for animals, both girls were immediately down on the floor, scooping the puppies into their arms. Before long, each held at least two of the Lab-mix puppies, the little creatures intent on licking their faces.

Unable to resist, Beth joined her daughters and gathered the remaining puppies onto her lap. One curled into a tight ball. Another climbed onto her shoulder and began licking her ear. The others squirmed until one wriggled free and chased his tail with determined vigor, completely preoccupied. They really were adorable, which was good because in every other way they were a nuisance.

Sophie held a puppy to her cheek. "Where'd you get them, Mom?"

"They were…a gift," she explained, turning her face away to avoid more wet, slurpy kisses.

"A gift?"

"But why'd you take all ten?" Bailey asked, astonished.

"I didn't have any choice. They showed up on my porch in a basket a week ago." Beth didn't say that discovering these puppies had been the proverbial last straw. They'd literally appeared on her doorstep the same day she'd learned Kent was coming here for Christmas. For an insane moment she'd considered running away, grabbing a plane to Fiji or Bora-Bora. Instead, she'd run over to the Hardings' and ended up spilling her heart out to Grace. Under normal conditions, Beth wasn't one to share her burdens with others. However, this was simply too much—an ex-husband's unexpected visit and the arrival of ten abandoned puppies, all during the busiest season of the year. The Hardings had given her tea and sympathy; Ted had been wonderful, too. Beth was grateful for his willingness to watch her animals but she refused to leave him with these ten additional dogs. So she'd made it her goal to find homes for all of them before Christmas. Which didn't give her a lot of time…

"How could someone just drop off ten puppies?" Bailey asked as she lifted one intrepid little guy off her shoulder and settled him in her lap.

"Who could do that and not be seen?" Sophie added. "I mean, you have people working all over this place."

Beth had certainly asked around. "Jeff saw a woman with a huge basket at my door. He thought he recognized her from his church, but when he asked her, she denied it. Then later, Pete, one of the drivers, claimed he saw a man on my porch with a basket. I talked to five different people and got five different stories. All I know is that I've got to find homes for these puppies before we leave for Whistler." And preferably before Kent arrived, although that was highly unlikely.

"Have you found any yet?" Bailey asked.

"No…but I've put out the word."

"You'll do it, Mom," Sophie said confidently. "I know you will."

"How old are they?" Bailey stroked a soft, floppy ear.

"Ted thinks about two months. Between six and eight weeks, anyway."

"They're irresistible. You won't have trouble finding homes," Sophie said.

Beth wished she had even a fraction of her daughter's faith. In October, she'd found homes for four part-golden-retriever puppies. Coming up with those homes had been hard enough—and now ten more. She hoped the season would help.

She'd offer assistance with training if the new owners wanted it—and she'd push the all-important spay-and-neuter message. Ted had promised to give the owners a break on the price, too.

Working together, Beth and the girls corralled the puppies and got them back inside the laundry room. Then they washed up for lunch. Thankfully the girls' favorites didn't require much effort; the tomato basil soup and toasted cheese sandwiches were on the table within minutes.

"Now I truly feel like we're home," Bailey said, spooning up the thick soup.

Sophie sighed contentedly. "This place is starting to feel more like home all the time."

Beth had moved to Washington State following her divorce. For fifteen years she'd taught business and management classes at an agricultural college outside Sacramento. After she and Kent had split up, Beth felt she needed a change. A big one. An escape. She'd read about this Christmas tree farm for sale while browsing on the internet and had become intrigued. As soon as she'd visited the property and toured the house, she was sold.

Her general knowledge of farm life and crop cultivation had come in handy. She knew just enough about trees not to be intimidated. Besides, Wes Klein, the previous owners' son, had helped the first couple of years. She'd soon picked up everything else she needed to know. She hired the same crew each season and was pleasantly surprised by how smoothly things had gone this year, the first year she was on her own.

In addition to Christmas trees, she sold wreaths and garlands, which were created by three members of her staff who devoted all their time to this endeavor. The Kleins used to have only a handful of orders for holiday wreaths. Beth had turned that into a thriving aspect of the business. Plus, overseas sales of Christmas trees had doubled in the past three years. Beth had always enjoyed the season, but never more than now. She felt she was actively contributing to a lot of families' happiness this Christmas.

The girls cleared the table and put their plates and bowls in the dishwasher.

"I've got to get back outside, but before I go, I need you to tell me what's going on with your father." From the girls' startled expressions Beth realized she should have led into the conversation with a bit more finesse. But subtlety wasn't exactly her strong suit and she was short on time.

"Dad wanted to come for Christmas," Bailey answered, as if that was all the explanation required.

"Did he give you any particular reason?" she asked suspiciously.

Sophie shook her head. "None that he mentioned."

That wasn't too helpful; still, Beth persisted. "But why this year?"

Bailey shrugged. "Don't know. All I can tell you is that he said he missed us and asked if he could join us for Christmas. We couldn't say no. You wouldn't want us to, would you, Mom?"

"Of course not." Beth looked from one daughter to the other. "He didn't say anything more than that? You're sure?"

"Positive." Both girls widened their eyes, expressions innocent as could be.

Convinced there was more to this sudden desire to be with them—and remembering Grace's suggestion that the girls might be more involved than they were letting on—Beth hesitated. She wanted to probe deeper but really needed to get to work. As it was, she'd lingered with her daughters well into Jeff's lunch hour.

"You'll be okay without me?" Beth asked, abandoning all inquiries for the moment.

"Mom, it isn't like we're six years old!"

"I know, I know, it's just that I hate leaving you so soon after you got here."

"Go," Bailey said, ushering her toward the door. "We'll be fine. We'll unpack our suitcases and put It's a Wonderful Life in the DVD player."

"I want to watch it, too," Beth protested. It was their favorite Christmas movie.

"Okay, we'll hold off until tonight. Now go."

Walking out the door, Beth blew them a kiss, the same way she had every time she left for work when they were youngsters.

Meet the Author

Debbie Macomber, with more than 100 million copies of her books sold worldwide, is one of today's most popular authors. The #1 New York Times bestselling author is best known for her ability to create compelling characters and bring their stories to life in her books. Debbie is a regular resident on numerous bestseller lists, including the New York Times (70 times and counting), USA TODAY (currently 67 times) and Publishers Weekly (47 times). Visit her at www.DebbieMacomber.com.

Brief Biography

Port Orchard, Washington
Date of Birth:
October 22, 1948
Place of Birth:
Yakima, Washington
Graduated from high school in 1966; attended community college

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1225 Christmas Tree Lane 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 341 reviews.
tracysnook More than 1 year ago
This is the final volume of this series, and I must say I am sad about that. Over the time that this series has been written I really have fallen in love with the books, and the people who live in them. I guess that means it is time to brush off the earlier books and re-read them. This book is centered around the Christmas Tree farm, on none other than Christmas Tree Lane. Beth Morehouse is a new owner, who relocated from California after she grew apart from her husband and they divorced. She needed a change of scenery, and the Christmas Tree farm gave her just that. She also seems to be a magnet for orphaned puppies, and through out the book is finding home for these darlings with the other residents of Cedar Cove. Beth's daughters are also up to some shenanigans and are trying to get their parents back together, not what I would expect from college age girls. But I think that they realize before their parents did that they really do belong together. But as usual life is complicated, and both Beth and seemingly her ex-husband Kent have other people who are interested in them. So they need to re-evaluate their feelings and see what is really best for them. The paths that they take is very realistic, and something that anyone who has gone through a divorce, and still has a smidgeon of feelings for their ex can relate to. Since this is the last book of the series, there are many other side stories that tie up any loose ends that were left behind in previous stories. This really is a good book, though I do think that you would appreciate it more if you have read some of the previous book first. Though it can stand on its own just fine, I think having some more back story just makes it even better. I will miss the Cedar Cove books, but I will also eagerly await any new books and/or series that Debbie Macomber will come out with. I would like to thank Harlequin for a copy of the book, and for the opportunity to read such a great book. Thank you
marianne68 More than 1 year ago
The titles are always a little hard to remember, but her books are not. Can't wait to read more.
rhonda1111RL More than 1 year ago
Its sad to say goodbye Cedar Cove after all this time. I have read almost everyone of the books and never felt disappointed in them. I love how after thier story ends you still see most of characters in thier routine lives. With the addresses letting everyone know what order the books are in is clever too. Beth 3 years ago divorced her husband and moved to Cedar Cove from california. Beth bought a Christmas tree farm. She also rescues animals and find them a good home. Started a program with dogs and senior citizens also started a program to take dogs to library. In the last book she found homes for 4 dogs and delivered to her door was a basketfull of Puppies 10. Beth is overwhelmed too top off busy time of year for christmas tree farm her exhusband is planning to spend christmas with her two college girls. Beth has not seen her exhusband in three years. Thier marrage just drifted apart into seperate lives and they noticed when the girls moved out for college. Beth is going sking with her daughters after christmas so she has set a goal to find them all a good home. So talking people seeing who wants a puppy, we get to see and get a update on how everyone is doing. When Kent shows up at her home beth has been thinking a lot about how her marriage ended also all the times in between. She has been looking forward to seeing Kent again and maybe to see if their is away back together. But Kent is not alone he has brought a young lady with him Daniel. Beth is very disappointed and her daughters are mad that he is ruining thier plans to get their parents back together. Cedar Cove is a charming town. This book almost makes me want a puppie. But two dogs and a cat are enough for me. If you have read and enjoyed any of her cedar cove books you will want to read this one. I was given this book in exchange of honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
enjoed the complete series sorry to see it end...highly recommend reading the entire series..
Ruby54 More than 1 year ago
As already stated by others, this is the last book in the Cedar Cove series. It was interesting how the author was able to tie up all the loose ends of the characters. I can imagine the list she had beside her to consult! I have faithfully read the entire series and almost had forgotten a few people in the stories but memories returned as she reminds us of their places in town and in the lives of others. There is a story woven all within concerning the giving away of puppies; at first I thought that was a stretch, but upon thinking about it, I realized that if the Cedar Cove community were real, the people involved would act just the way they did. If you have enjoyed the previous books, you will like this one too. All of our old friends are there. I would like to live in Cedar Cove myself!
Longhornmom More than 1 year ago
In this final book of the Cedar Cove series, you will get to revisit all your friends in Cedar Cove. You will see true love prevail after a divorce that should never have happened. The main character has a large litter of puppies left on her doorstep. She must find a home for all the puppies before she and her daughter leave for their ski trip. See how she manages this. Great read.
RtBBlog More than 1 year ago
Review by Jen: Reading and reviewing 1225 Christmas Tree Lane is rather bittersweet since this is the last book is Ms Macomber's popular Cedar Cove series. Twelve books later, there are so many plots to wrap up much of this book is jumping from couple to couple to see them once more, checking in to see if their happily-ever-after is still in tact... or we're watching that HEA finally come to fruition. I actually liked how Ms Macomber used the adoption of the abandoned puppies to revisit all the beloved families in Cedar Cove. And throughout the book, the reader is brought back to town, Beth Moorehouse, as she tries to adopt out those puppies and her own story is told. I've thoroughly enjoyed the Cedar Cove series and this one is no exception. I might have preferred one of the regulars to have their story be the focus, but all-in-all I was satisfied with the conclusion. I will miss visiting this town every year and hope that Ms Macomber may revisit them again in the future.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
In the typical Debbie Macomber style, she brings the characters to life and one has to love them all. As this is the last book in the series, Debbie has used an interesting technique to wrap up the stories of all the characters we know. She has a new character (introduced in book 11), Beth, who needs to place 10 puppies and most of the families either take one or give one for Christmas. Beth's story is the main plot and is well told. I was disappointed at first when I saw the book has only 167 pages but it was fulfilling as it is. I will miss all the people from Cedar Cove.
mrsbeary More than 1 year ago
I have loved all of the Cedar Cove books and looked forward to each edition. I was dismayed to learn this would be the last one. However, Debbie did herself proud -she tied up the loose ends into a nice red bow and updated all of the families. I am sorry to see them go, but it was a great ending to the series! I can't wait to see what series she comes up with next!
ethel55 More than 1 year ago
Well, it's been many years since Debbie Macomber invited us to Cedar Cove and I have enjoyed all of the stories it held. This last Christmas story is a fitting finale to this series. Beth Morehouse, who owns the local Christmas tree farm, also has a habit of finding strays and in this case, it's a basket of puppies that need homes by Christmas. As word spreads around town and people visit the tree farm for their own Christmas trees, we get one last glimpse and follow up of many of my favorite characters from the series. It was a great way to touch base with so many inhabitants of Cedar Cove.
MaureenST More than 1 year ago
I wanted to savor this book, knowing it is the end of the series. There are all kinds of up dates on our old friends, and some unlikeable individuals are also included! The story centers around Beth and Kent Morehouse...who are divorced. There daughter's Bailey and Sophie have plans to get them back together. Throughout the book there are 10 adorable Labrador puppies. Someone left a basket full of these beautiful pups for Beth. The people of Cedar Cove find themselves opening their homes to these beautiful animals. Who are going to be the lucky owners of these pups? When Kent arrives with beautiful Danielle, will all the plans go awry? Be prepared for a lot of funny and joyful happenings. Christmas cannot go by without a great Debbie Macomber book! Enjoy! I received this book from the Publisher Harlequin, and was not required to give a positive review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Nice short read. Sweet Christmas story
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I ws a little bored with this book. There was too much repeated from the series. I did enjoy how Christmasy it was.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was a good way to end the series but really hated to see it end. Going to miss Olivia and rest of the cast.
PureJonel More than 1 year ago
This was a brilliant Christmas story as well as a brilliant story in general.  I was completely wrapped up in this story and couldn’t put it down, even for a second.  Macomber’s brilliant descriptions pop, wrapping you completely up in the story.  You can visualise each and every aspect of the story, becoming part of it.   I love the large number of characters who are all uniquely and individually developed.  In essence you’re reading about, no, welcomed into, an entire community.  There is a main couple; however, everyone is always important.  As a reader you almost feel like you’re a part of this community.  It’s a brilliant feeling.  
turpsniffer More than 1 year ago
Very nice ending the a wonderful series of book!!
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