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The holidays were magic at our house. On November 1 we decorated the house for fall. Starting with the fireplace mantle then decorating the top of the TV with dried corn cobs, maple leaves, pumpkins, and candles that represented the pilgrims. You could smell the turkey and mash potatoes in your mind even before the day had arrived. Decorating the house marked the countdown to Christmas and the beginning of holiday baking.
The Christmas holiday meant family and friends, neighborhood parties, and the exchanging of baked goods. A chance to taste the different traditions that each family had during the holidays.
I grew up in the 70’s. A child born in the middle of the 60’s just in time for the invention of microwave dinners and McDonald’s. I remember when we bought our fist microwave, mom and I promptly baked a chocolate cake in it. Back then you had to turn the pan as the rotating plate did not exist.
It was always about the baking and decorating. As November gave way to December and Thanksgiving finished filling our bellies, we were all loaded into the station wagon for a trip to the Christmas Tree Farm. It was a day of finding just the right tree, that was just the right size, that would pass mom’s approval.
Once the Christmas tree was up in the front window, the decorating began. All through the house there were scenes of Christmas. The stockings were hung on the chimney, the top of the TV gave way to a Christmas scene, holly was strung everywhere, all the towels and dishes became a Christmas wonderland. Presents began appearing and family members and neighbors would come and go, exchanging whatever goodies they had baked.
It was heaven!
I recreated my holiday childhood for my children, decorating and baking each year. Now that my children have their own children, the tradition has been passed on to another generation.
Last year during the beginning of the holiday my daughter and I came up with a way to share, not only the decorations and our LOVE of Christmas, but the baking and recipes as well. We decided to create an on-line neighborhood. A place to purchase the decorations we love and use in our own homes, and a place to exchange recipes we have had through the years, and ones we are discovering as new generations come with their traditions for celebrating the holiday season.
We welcome all your comments, recipe shares, and your love for the holiday that fills the world with peace, love and hope.