So far, despite working 2 jobs, 13-hour weekdays plus a half-day on Saturdays, I've baked 7 kinds of cookies, bought all of the gifts I plan on getting, and delivered cookie packages to some of the people who are good to me all year. I'll probably bake a couple more kinds of cookies, and finish the deliveries by this weekend, since I'm having hernia surgery on Monday.
So wearing myself to a frazzle? Check. Doing things the traditional way? Check. But I wouldn't have it any other way. Years ago I started a tradition of gifting small plates of cookies to people who enhance my life...from the guy in the retail store who always waits on me, calling me by my first name and making me feel special, to the woman who cuts my hair. There are the teenagers who grade work at the center I tutor at, and the teachers at the school I sub for who ask for me by name, to keep me working. All of these people matter to me, and I like to let them know how much I appreciate it, with a small token of buttery goodness.
But since I've been so busy, something had to give, besides the sleep I'm not getting every night, as I try to keep up with things at home. My promoting has been demoted into the back seat so far that it's locked in the trunk. And I haven't done any writing since the school year started, along with my 2 jobs and long days Real life has demanded that I spend less time in the worlds of my imagination, and more in the here and now.
The reward has been family time that I've enjoyed immensely, including when one son got married in September, I wore the dress I made for it, and my other 3 kids were attendants. Plus we got a wonderful new daughter to love! Win-win for everyone.
I do have a book (Secret Love) whose new, revised edition will be out soon, but my publishing company was sold and things are taking time to get finalized. No worries, since I'm not in any hurry right now. I'll be laid up on the couch for the days directly leading up to the holidays, so probably won't be on-line here...or anywhere...much.
About the only thing I'll be able to do is pray for peace and tolerance to spread its healing warmth around our poor, beleaguered planet. So Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, Joyful Solstice, and best wishes for a Happy New Year to everyone!
Here's one of my favorite Christmas cookie recipes:
Walnut Sandwich Cookies
2 sticks butter + 2/3 cup powdered sugar + 1 tsp. vanilla.........................Cream together.
1 3/4 cups flour + 3/4 cups finely chopped walnuts......................Blend well into mixture.
Using 1 level tsp. of dough roll into balls and place on ungreased cookie sheets. I like to flatten them with a powdered sugar-dipped glass bottom.
Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes. Cool completely.
Chocolate filling: Melt together 1/2 cup chocolate chips + 2 Tbsp. Butter + 2 Tbsp. milk, mixing while heating (I use the nuke) to blend well.
Add ½ tsp. vanilla, mix, then add 1 cup powdered sugar and mix well again.
(You can thin with more milk if desired.)
Spread filling on one cookie, then sandwich with another. Roll sideways in extra finely-chopped walnuts, so the nuts stick to the filling.
These freeze well and last only until someone finds them!