Every year I do a lot of preparations for Christmas. I usually have most of the shopping done by Thanksgiving (yes, I'm one of those people!), handmade gifts are almost finished and I begin a huge bake-a-thon the could probably feed a third-world country.
Think I'm exaggerating? Last year I filled six five-gallon buckets with three kinds of cookies. At twenty to thirty dozen per bucket, that's one hundred and twenty dozen to one hundred and fifty dozen cookies! Oh, and I baked banana bread too, but I forgot how many at this point.
What did I do with all those cookies? I gave them as gifts- after taking a share off the top for my family of course! Now that my son is a teenager, that share has gotten monumentally bigger in recent years!
I was hoping to do something similar this year, but because of the late move I won't be able to do any baking- at least until January! I just tell everyone I'll be a bit late- and no, I won't be making as many this year- or should I say next year!
Comparing this year to last, things have still managed to be at the same chaotic level that they always are, but the priorities have shifted- there is no baking binge- I'm rushing to unpack. There is no present wrapping day- the kids are getting one or two gifts each and not a treeful. Time and money are just a little too tight because of the move. We don't even have time to decorate the tree we have on the porch- and I'm surprised we even remembered to water the darned thing, no less decorate it!
I miss the chaos of cooling racks all over the table and counters. I miss the smells of baking cookies while the Christmas music played, the arguments of who got what cookie and how many, and why didn't I bake cut-outs, because then they could decorate the snowmen as reindeer-saving, Star Wars Jedi Knight Commanders and sparkly, sugar coated Snow-Fairies.
Then there was the traditional Christmas Open House we would host, complete with homemade cheese and cracker trays, little finger quiches, vegetable trays, and other assorted goodies that almost made the kitchen table buckle. We still have the fifteen kinds of cocoa and assortment of thirty types of tea, but it's no fun unless you have twenty people wanting a drink at the same time!
But there is still time to plan my Acts of Random Chaos. We plan on having a house warming party sometime near the end of January. All that pent up baking and catering energy has got to go somewhere...right? Besides, I'm sure people will be suffering from Christmas withdrawals or the winter blahs, so I'll be helping them! Right?