Christmas Wrap-Up

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 presetSo what if the chihuahua hiked his leg on the Christmas tree skirt? He missed the presents.


I accidentally left out half of the sugar in this gingerbread cookie dough. The gingerbread men were inedible. Big deal. We had other cookies.

05-IMG_6525In fact, I got a little dip-happy with some melted chocolate.

Processed with VSCOcam with lv01 preset

The Christmas dinner ham took 2 1/2 hours to heat through instead of the one hour specified in Barefoot Contessa’s recipe for a ham twice its size. I trust Ina Garten so implicitly that I didn’t even pay attention to the notes I’ve written on that page of her cookbook, Parties!, published in 2001. I keep making this ham because the mango chutney glaze that tops it is so good, and the cranberry fruit conserve that goes with it is wonderful. The ham has been hours late every time. First born added a note this year in red Sharpie marker so that I can’t miss it again:

THIS TAKES FOREVER TO COOK!!! Christmas 2014 8:25 p.m. (We still haven’t eaten.)

I’ll remember to factor in 250% longer cooking time next year.

I learned that fake mustaches will get a party started off right. These were the prizes contained in English Christmas crackers, along with traditional paper hats and punny jokes.


An elf can get an attitude when her mother pulls out a camera.


It was a busy, happy, frustrating, labor-intensive, fun, nerve-wracking, joyful, spiritual, sleep-deprived Christmas. I’m done eating sugar-spangled, star-shaped cookies for the next 11.5 months, and I’m trying to muster enthusiasm for one last round of ham leftovers. Thank you for reading this blog. I wish you and those whom you love good health, great meals to share, and many other blessings in 2015.


(Photo of Bruiser the Chihuahua by Hannah Hale, who says nobody saw who peed on the tree skirt, and points out that there are three other dogs in the household who could have been the perpetrator. Bruiser has a reputation and no alibi, however. We still love him.)

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