Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Twelve Days 'til Christmas

And so the countdown continues.  I imagine it will seem like twelve weeks to those under the age of 8, and twelve hours to the rest of us.  

We began our array of annual holiday traditions at Still Pond Cemetery on Sunday, with the laying of the wreath on the paternal gravestone, and a visit to all the other relatives, friends and acquaintances found in that historic spot.  This second Sunday in December is further enhanced with food and drink - of course - and this year we shared sausage and biscuits, cookies and champagne, coffee and eggnog, as the Holiday Food Traditions begin anew. 

We are a little remiss in keeping up with some of our December favorites.  We didn't order any pecans this year, since the droughts in Texas and Georgia have done a serious number on this year's crop.  We haven't ordered any citrus yet, mostly because the clementines at the local grocery have been pretty tasty.  However, eggnog has made its way into our refrigerator, and the fresh nuts are out on the sideboard, with the cracker ready and waiting to be put to use.

Kevin has made several batches of his tooth-killing salted nut brittle.  He also is trying to replicate a cookie that Meg brought in on Saturday night - a white chocolate, coconut and oatmeal confection that won him over in a serious way.  We are still trying to figure out a good Wassail recipe, and the hot chocolate syrup is on my list for tomorrow, as well as perhaps a cookie batch or two.  The Fran's order is in - although it was disappointing to find that they were sold out of a few of my regular selections - and the menus for the holiday weekend are slowly taking shape.  It is truly this time of year that we seem to become the most food-centric couple of all time. 

The restaurant is decorated!  That is headline news in and of itself.  The poinsettias alone are providing a most festive tone to the dining room; the lights are on the horns and the quilts are on the walls.  We have opted to go treeless this year, putting long strands of colored lights on the deck railing instead.  We will bring in the greens and holly next week, in our final contribution to the winter holiday decor.  We enjoy the preparations for the approaching holiday weekend as much as we enjoy the big day itself - especially when there are those cookies to sample and plenty of calvados for the eggnog.  Ho HO Ho!  Let the HollyDaze begin!

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