Wednesday, December 15, 2010

It's beginning to Smell a Lot Like Christmas...

Crazy time! I'm stocking the wagon train in preparation for the trek up North to the cabin for the holidays. Full house again this year with all my children, grand kids, and daughter-in-law's parents. And let's not forget four dogs! My daughter of the four Standard Poodle household has been limited to a one dog quota this year - I get to bring mine and her brother's each have a dog.

Not quite sure when I decided that the "Super-Mom" role no-longer provided me with jollies! Anyway, some time ago I learned that the word "delegate" means a lot more fun and a lot less stress. So the delegation is underway with each family unit responsible for some particular dish and then everyone picks up on appetizers, lunch stuff, desserts.  I'm responsible for The Christmas Dinner - drum roll. Roast beef, Yorkshire pudding, roast potatoes and probably my new favorite treatment for Brussels Sprouts - tossed with bacon and chestnuts for a holiday version. At the request of the 13 year old grandson - I have to take up everything for him to make his all-time favorite dish - Fettuccine Alfredo.

My middle son went to school in Santa Fe and became enamored of New Mexico cooking. He's had the job of creating a New Mexico style feast for Christmas Eve - the past two years he's been in Africa so we have missed out on his amazing sopapillas - he's promised us a Turkey Mole this year.  His wife, Annie, has been busy making cookies with three-year old Maxine - she's wary of sharing - apparently one of Maxine's methods of spreading frosting is to lick it!  One thing we can be sure of - no matter how cold it is - Maxine will be wearing a tutu.  Chris and Jim - Annie's parents are the masters of amazing appetizers and the all-time hit Omelet  in a Bag.   My daughter, Lisa, is a baking wizard - she turns out professional looking (and better tasting) tortes, tarts and cakes effortlessly.  The youngest of my tribe makes a really mean turkey chili so I know that will feature sometime during the week. 

Family and friends - that's what the gathering is all about. We're non of us religious - but we do celebrate our blessings, freely discuss the setbacks (and there have been some) of the year, and are generous in our support of one another.  As for gifts - a few months ago, one member of my small tribe suffered an enormous emotional blow - the siblings rallied round, the support palpable. I expressed my gratitude to them for their out-pouring of love - "Mom", said one"Why would it be any other way. It's how you raised us."  That and a slobbery kiss from the newest member , eleven month old Finn, is all I need or want.

Happy holidays to you all. May you be generous in your love for one another and in your giving to those in need.