So on Sunday, we found this year's
fresh tree at a local garden center.
It is smaller than we usually get, but then . . .
does size really matter?
After convincing a broken tree stand to do its job just one more season,
and guy wiring the tree to the ceiling just to make sure
it won't go all wibbly-wobbly on us, (as we are scarred veterans
of more than several tree-keeling-over disasters) --
Howard put on the lights . . .
. . . and then put on the lights.
Burdened with a head cold and just a little smidgey whiff of Grinchiness, barely noticeable,
Howard didn't keep track of how many lights are on this year's tree.
There are a lot. Thank you, my dear.
Now you'd think I'd have this Tannenbaum all decorated by now,
Instead, I have lots of these:
Oatmeal cookies with dried cranberries inside, and white chocolate on top -- because we forgot,
my friend Emily and I, to put the white chocolate chips into the batter.
My Mom's Romance Cookie bars -- walnuts, shortbread crust, meringue, coconut.
It's surprising I still make these, as I can clearly conjure up that teenage "oh no I'm going to die" feeling
when Mom would sidle up to my Beau du jour at our family Christmas party, and with a
meaningful, exaggerated wink and a Groucho Marx eyebrow wiggle, offer him "Romance Cookies."
To any of my siblings reading this, you know what I mean. :-)
Howard's favorite -- Vermont Crackles.
A long lost recipe, now found.
The Oatmeal Cookies, getting all glamorous for their closeups.
People will totally believe that the white chocolate is there on purpose, right?
Mint meringues. A crispy shell on the outside, a gooey chewy stick-to-your-teeth delight on the inside.
Don't you think those meringues need a drizzle of dark chocolate on them? They look so pink and naked.
And, finally, lemon bars.
Baked by someone (yes, I'm looking at myself) who forgot that the confectioners' sugar needs to
be sifted onto these cookies when they are HOT, so it sticks. Clearly, it ain't sticking.
Don't sneeze nearby; the powdered sugar cloud will be wicked.
Alida and Josh get in from California, a late afternoon arrival at the magically delicious Newark Airport.
For these California dwellers I have put flannel sheets on the guest room bed.
Which is cheaper than turning up the thermostat.
And now I'm going to decorate the tree in the sunroom,
and keep repeating, "It's a little tree, it's not so big, it's really small,
it's not even quite 9-feet tall, it's actually rather dainty, I can do this,
I think I can, I think I can, I think I can, I think I can . . . . "
If you don't hear from me for awhile, check under the Rubbermaid bins of Christmas tree ornaments.
Random moment of awful truth!
Can you bake in the midst of creative chaos?
Believe it or not, this isn't as bad or disorganized as it looks.
It's worse. (Ba-dum-bum.)
Two bakers, one kitchen. There's gonna be a mess, y'know?
Poor sad Dion. So many cookies, just out of reach.
Have a lovely Wednesday! -- Cass