Saturday, December 16, 2017

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Christmas Traditions


Over the years, some traditions have faded away while other new traditions have taken root. For years, Christmas was always at our house. My grandfathers and uncles would all show up for a great Christmas dinner complete with lively discussions about the politics of the day. Then, one by one the older members passed away while I came of age, dated and eventually got married. Christmas was still at my parents, but Christmas was also at my wife's parents. When it was just the two of us, spending half a day at each parent wasn't so bad, but when the kids arrived, it quickly got very hectic. Eventually, we decided to have two Christmases, One on Christmas Day and the other on Boxing day. Each year we rotated so one year Christmas Day was at my parents, the next year it was at my wife's. Then my sister married and my wife's sister married and our little solution became quite complicated again. But through it all, Christmas was always at my parents. My dad died in 1997, but the tradition continued until my Mom
was nearly ninety. Over the years, my sister and I tried to help our mother by bringing food dishes with us, but Mother made the vast majority of the food items until, finally, she could do it no more. Then Christmas was either at my sister's or my house. That's the way it still is, but our kids now have families of their own and getting everyone together is often hit and miss. My one nephew's wife has family in Michigan and my son makes his home in Cochrane - each almost a day's drive away.
So, traditions change. One tradition that has been going on for many years is the Christmas baking that goes on at our house. It starts late in November and takes at least a week to complete. Goodies are distributed to friends and families and, of course, served at special meals. Some of the cookies are served only at the holiday season while others could be made any time of year. Here are the squares and cookies I've prepared for this year:

Belgian Cookies

Black Forest Cookies

Butter Cookies

Chocolate - Oat Fudge

Coconut Crranberry Bars

Gingerbread Family

Hershey's Double Chocolate Mint Cookies

Melt In Your Mouth Cookies

Mini Pecan Tartlets

Nanaimo or Miracle Bars

No Cook Christmas Cookies

Pastel Bon-Bon Cookies

Peanut Butter Squares

Shortbread Squares

Whipped Shortbread

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