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Gearing up for Christmas...

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Gearing up for Christmas...

Postby Lizcordysmum » Nov 23, 2012 10:21 pm

My plan is to make and decorate 100 Christmas tree sugar cookies for D3 and family.
today I got the dough assembled. Then I read the rest of the receipt: calls for cream cheese frosting.

It's got to go by bus and two ferries from here, down to Vancouver, and if lucky, right onto a bus to go many hundreds of kilometres to Williams Lake, BC.

Methinks I have to switch to Royal Frosting.

Now here is the kicker. I keep losing my nerve. I who baked and decorated a quadzillion sugar cookies in My Day, am now panicking over rolling out the dough, and then, decorating. I am trying hard to just take one step at a time, but everyting crowds in...

It is time to set up the Christmas Village too...Hamish provides so much amusement as the Village Cat, and keeps everything nicely dusted for me. I have ougrown the 4 foot by 8 foot plywood board, tho, and think D2 is going to get some surprises this year! Hamish and me have a lot of fun playing with the village...and I've read about a woman who started out with three pieces and now has a CITY. That's scary!

The winds did not destroy my hanging basket loaded with cedar boughs and pretties, yesterday...so I guess it is safe to do the other two baskets...I hope. And I must fake-garland the upside down tomato cages and deck these with tiny lights, too. Himself draws the line at putting fake snow all over the garden, for some silly reason!

In the pantry, (closed off from the rest, lights kept off) my narcissus and Amaryllis are coming along slowly...I want them for After Christmas, not for. However, in the GARDEN, today during my sunshiney break outdoors, I noticed the container of Osteospermum has fresh buds ready to open, there are fresh small roses open on the Iceberg rose, and the flower buds are swelling on the camellia out front....if this is Friday it must be Tuscany, right?

Happy, happy, everybody!
Cordy's Mum, Liz
Rain Coast, BC Zone 7b/8a


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Re: Gearing up for Christmas...

Postby Heidi S » Nov 25, 2012 3:32 pm

Liz, My Mom-in-law has sent us baking by Greyhound for years - the most ambitious was the fresh (frozen) apple pie she made from the left over apples after Scouting's annual apple day - it arrived intact, crust and all. it was bubble wrapped, and in a glass pie plate no less. I was very impressed! It was the most expensive apple pie I have ever enjoyed though. The years we haven't gone to the coast, we have always received several tins of her amazing shortbread, and a large tin of her wonderful Light Christmas cake - the best I have ever had. I have written down her recipes last year, as she is failing rapidly, but haven't tried doing them yet - maybe after she is gone. Mike and I were just thinking that she doesn't have the strength to do them this year. I suspect it is already too late to make a fruitcake though, I might still have to try to get one batch of the shortbread made.

So go for it - the effort will be appreciated I am sure.
Heidi S,
Prince George, BC
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Re: Gearing up for Christmas...

Postby Lizcordysmum » Nov 25, 2012 8:55 pm

Hi Heidi!

27 sugar cookies baked. Old old marble board worked very well, so did newish wooden rolling pin/gave away marble one, too heavy. I may get 5 dozen cookies from this recipe...and right now, that's okay with me. I forgot (if I ever knew) that baking on parchment paper means no light tan edges...and I had hungry birds clamouring that the sun was on its last legs for the day...all the feeders running on empty, and by the time I got in again, I put the 2nd pan in the oven, baked, cooling on racks, cleaned up everything, and tomorrow is another day!

GOOD news is lady next door went mountain climbing again and brought home a big van full of evergreens...she was out and I raided what I HOPE is her discard pile, but just in case it isn't...I will hold off on wiring 7 great trunky branches to my back porch pillar until I see and ask her if she had plans for these. If not, one day this week (amidst a rain and windstorm) I will get them up, and lights on the "tree."

Do make that big batch of shortbread for your Mom...no changes to her old receipt. (Not if she is anything like MY mom was!) HER recipe is on the box of CornStarch.

I do mine with cookie stamps...a singing bird, a pussy cat with a tree ornament, and a nice big fat piggie. And I also like playing with rosemary, or lavender, too.

I have vowed to never make more than 2 1/2 dozen cookies again. On one day. Time to pass the torch!

And yes, Greyhound, definitely.

Loved reading about your apple pie! a great memory!

NOTE: no snow in Wms Lake...D3 is grateful, son just got the N taken off his licence...the day of the freezing rain... The bigs snowstorm blew away with the winds.
Cordy's Mum, Liz
Rain Coast, BC Zone 7b/8a


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Re: Gearing up for Christmas...

Postby Heidi S » Nov 25, 2012 9:13 pm

Nope, my mom-in-law's recipe has rice flour in it - not the one on the cornstarch box. She always made rolls, chilled them then cut the rolls into thick rounds. We love them!
Heidi S,
Prince George, BC
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Re: Gearing up for Christmas...

Postby Lizcordysmum » Nov 25, 2012 9:28 pm

Mom in law, sorry! Missed it.

Is funny how ONLY one recepe will do...or gasps of shock, horror..."what IS this?"

There is also only ONE way to cook cranberries, in case you didn't know. TWO CUPS of white sugar to a bag of fresh berries. Mom loved her sweets, and butter.

Christmas cakes...Mom used to do the 1st of November...dark, fruity, boozy. The darling used to use Vodka...just "for the taste."

You COULD do a white fruitcake...still. Hurry!
Cordy's Mum, Liz
Rain Coast, BC Zone 7b/8a


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Re: Gearing up for Christmas...

Postby Heidi S » Nov 25, 2012 11:43 pm

Yes, the cake is a light one - the recipe is from the Vancouver Sun/Edith Adams, from the 60"s perhaps.

1 lb bleached sultana raisins
1/2 lb candied red cherries
1/2 lb green candied cherries
1/2 lb slivered blanched almonds
1/2 lb candied citron peel
1/2 lb candied pineapple
1/2 lb butter
1 cup white sugar
6 eggs
1/2 cup orange juice
2.5 cups unsifted pastry flour
1 tsp baking powder.
1/4 tsp almond flavouring - optional

I have never made fruitcake, ever ,but I am going to have to to keep my guys happy now. MIL says she doesn't put any alcohol on hers, and she usually makes it in November so I guess I can make this work somehow.

Just thinking about doing this for this year and future ones, makes me so sad that we are about to lose her. She has been the Baker Extraordinare in the family, and is renowned for her deserts. She was the June Cleaver mom and wife, and I really respect how she managed her life and family. It is so hard watching our last 2 parents failing.
Heidi S,
Prince George, BC
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Re: Gearing up for Christmas...

Postby Lizcordysmum » Nov 26, 2012 10:40 pm

Make it now...it will serve like a tea bread.

I am sorry for how you are feeling, but they ARE still with you...don't waste NOW. It does help with your acceptance of life and of death.

"Remember me with smiles" is the best bit of prose I ever read.

Bit Hugs to you.
Cordy's Mum, Liz
Rain Coast, BC Zone 7b/8a


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