My brother and I always longed for the newer ones. Now I wish I had those old frosted glass baubles. A few years ago my cousin sent me an ornament that our grandmother had acquired at the last minute after a Christmas Eve disaster. Every year since, when I hang it on the tree I tell the story of how it came to be in our house, and the kids say “You say this every year!” and I always say “Tradition”. (Huge Fiddler on the Roof fan, here) We go to a tree farm now, no woods behind our house, but we still go out and choose and cut our tree. It takes a while, but it is still fun and everyone looks forward to it.
My mom would slave in the kitchen for days making cookies. Mainly sugar cookies, the kind you would roll out and cut into shapes. After they were baked we would all sit around the table with different colors of homemade frosting and colored sugared and sprinkles (my favorite) and we kids would get to decorating. There were four of us at the most, sometimes three and we would decorate about six or seven dozen. Mom would make up plates of all the cookies and pass them on to our neighbors and friends. She’d wrap them in cellophane and put bows on the top with a Christmas card. She made cookies that were rolled in corn flakes with a cherry pressed in the center, and peanut butter balls that had rice crispies in them. I can’t remember the other kinds. When I got older I made hard candy that she included. When I got out on my own I started my own baking traditions and started building gingerbread houses. I make peanut butter balls and Oreo truffles, biscotti and sometimes Russian tea cakes. Only no one wants food anymore. Everyone makes their own now. I do it anyway.
Yes, I love this season! People are nicer, they smile a little easier, they seem to be more considerate, and a little less hurtful. Merry Christmas everyone, and may you keep a bit of it in your heart in the coming new year.