Holiday Odds and Ends

Our holiday traditions have been scaled back this year in an attempt to manage Christmas production rehearsals, athletic events, school schedules, and just life in general. I’m calling it “Holiday Lite”.

For starters, I toned the baking way down and am employing my good friend, the Sprinkle, to make simple things, like these Vanilla Wafer Cookies, look festive.


These are great to make if you’re short on time and/or ingredients. Sprinkles are optional. You can find the recipe HERE.

In the fruitcake department, I didn’t even bother to bake. I just bought one of those blocks-of-fruitcake at the grocery store and called it good.


Ginger saw me eating my daily ration the other day and asked what the “green things” were. I told her they were cherries. “Cherries aren’t supposed to be green,” she told me. She’s right, of course.

We managed to get the tree up this past week. And then it sat for three days before we got around to decorating it.


We told ourselves we were giving it time to “unfold”.

In a few years, maybe we’ll just decorate the sequoias CPT A is growing.


He has two he started from seeds he bought at Yosemite. Both are home for the holidays to ensure they get the care they need while he’s in and out of the office.

Gift-buying took me to Home Goods over the weekend where I saw these on the Clearance rack.


If you don’t mind a headless cookie jar or teapot, they are probably still there – only $29.99.

I also managed a bit of holiday shopping at the grocery store. I found Twister games in the candy aisle and grabbed one for Ginger, who had been wanting one of her own for months… then, I forgot I had bought it and had her help me unload the groceries.

Of course she found it.


Never mind, though. The kids had a good time anyway.

I’m not knitting or crocheting any gifts this year, but Pepper is. She put together this loom-knit hat in an afternoon. It’s destined for a friend in Maine.


What I am currently working on is a scarf. A red, sparkly scarf (though you can’t really see the sparkles in this photo). I started it on Sunday and am hoping to finish it by Christmas Eve. We’ll see….


If I miss my deadline, I can always say it’s for Valentine’s Day. If you’re interested, it’s the Elegant Scarf pattern from Caron.

And, finally – the chickens.


The chickens have been champs this week, braving snow and freezing temperatures and still managing to lay eggs. They are marvels, those chickens. Amazing.

From the dining room table, wanting you to know that I’m the current reigning Twister champion in the house right now,

Mrs. Smythe


6 Comments on “Holiday Odds and Ends

  1. Some Christmas’ just end up that way. As long as you felt you had enough fruitcake and sang enough carols, I think you can call the holidays complete. I envy your Twister skills: sadly I am an unbendable being when it comes to that game.
    I love the red yarn: are the sparkly bits at all scratchy?
    Merry Christmas!

    • I think my Twister success boils down to my height. I can reach much farther in all directions than my two daughters and that gives me a definite edge. But, I let them think it’s because I’m super-skilled. And as to the yarn – the sparkly bits aren’t a bit scratchy. It was a pleasant surprise (because usually they are). I wouldn’t have bought the yarn if they were. I can’t handle scratchy in a scarf.

  2. Yeah, we were sick over Thanksgiving (when we usually decorate for Christmas). We did get the tree up, and about half the ornaments. . . but when the lights are off you can see what a bad distribution job we did. Oh well. You win some, you lose some. 🙂
    PS – love the sparkly scarf!

    • It will probably become one of those Christmas stories you continue to tell over the years. “Do you remember when we were so sick and couldn’t decorate the tree and the lights ended up all wonky…” Funny how those kinds of trees are the ones you tend to recall. And thank you for the kind comment about the scarf – it’s nearing completion!

  3. I have been working a tree lot and had my tree for a week and a half and it is still outside! Three days seems like a good turn around!