Some cherished holiday traditions are upheld, some fall by the wayside. Others are added. One that continues from my childhood is making sugar cookies. Ages ago, when my kids were small, I began this each year, young, fresh, my mind filled with visions of lovely cookies and sweet children’s faces bent over them with pleasure, then reality hit. My two oldest punched each other and fought over turns at rolling out dough that never rolled as it should and stuck to the cookie cutters. Tempers flared as once again the angel wouldn’t let go and fell apart.
Finally we had sheets filled with an assortment of Christmas figures lavishly covered with a blizzard of cookie sprinkles that rained all over the floor and crunched under foot. Few actually adhered to the cookies, and those that did had to be pressed on with sticky little hands. When the cookies were removed from the oven, parts of them had billowed up in the baking process, while those that had been pressed almost flat by fingers mashing in the sprinkles were crispy brown. There was no resemblance whatsoever between our creations and those perfect replicas in the magazines. Our baking sessions invariably ended with a tired old hag, two grinches, and cookies that only a very undiscerning individual would eat, say a child or a dog. The idea of sharing them with neighbors was dropped, but we loved doing it and rushed at it every year with a happy cry.
Nowadays, my art major daughter heads up this tradition. She’s adept at it and has taken a fancy to the old time ginger cut outs from my favorite colonial American recipe. No more brawls in the kitchen over cookie making until the grandchildren take part. If I’m smart I’ll let their mom’s bake the cookies with them, or the other grandmas.
A brief word about my new Christmas romance, Somewhere the Bells Ring:
‘Caught with pot in her dorm room, Bailey Randolph is exiled to a relative's ancestral home in Virginia to straighten herself out. Spending Christmas 1968 at Maple Hill is a dismal prospect until a ghost appears requesting her help, and her girlhood crush, Eric Burke, returns from Vietnam.’
So, if you enjoy an intriguing mystery with Gothic overtones and heart-tugging romance set in vintage America then Somewhere the Bells Ring is for you. And did I mention the ghost?
~ Available in various ebook formats at The Wild Rose Press, Amazon Kindle, All Romance Ebooks, Barnes & Noble’s Nookbook & other online booksellers.
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