One of the best parts of the Christmas holidays to me is all of the delicious desserts that seem to appear in everyone’s homes. But I think I may have gone a little overboard on the …um …sweets here in our kitchen…like we are going to be on a sugar high for awhile now! In the past week, I have baked seven dozen cookies, Swedish gingerbread, a pan of brownies, and decorated a couple of gingerbread houses. My son had to be cautioned to not gobble all of it up at least until I got my photographs done for this post. Then my oldest showed up today, and I knew it was a lost cause! So I scurried around with my camera to get some pictures. The cookie jars below were almost full at one point…hmm.
Here is the desk with the recipe handy for the Swedish gingerbread.
You can get a little better look here.
I traded out all the yellow cookbooks for red ones, and Christmas cards now fill the basket by the stove.
On the other side of the cookbooks is one of the gingerbread houses I’ve worked on. Now remember, in my last post you promised you would not laugh at my novice attempts at these. So I am holding you to that promise when I show them to you!
Here is the window with its double wreaths. This photo just does not do its Christmas cheer justice. On my computer monitor, the bows keep looking pink to me, but they are most certainly red.
On the other side of the window is a tray set up and ready to make hot cocoa in my Christmas mugs. I have been through some Christmas china! When we were first married I had the Cuthbertson Christmas tree. Then I sold it and purchased Lenox Winter Greetings. I sold it too, and it was replaced by the Spode Christmas Tree pattern. A few years after that, I got the bright idea that I did not need a “pattern” – only solid red dishes. That worked very well for many years, but last year I fell in love with a discontinued Williams Sonoma pattern – Christmas Icons.
I became real good friends with Ebay last year. :) I went on practically every auction they had for plates, mugs, a platter, and spoons in the pattern. The only thing I still need are their “tiny tapers” in it. Last week, I was able to get some more of the mugs there. The beauty of the pattern is that it is really an assortment of 4 patterns – which lends itself to going in several decorating directions. Obviously this year, my “direction” (if you can call it that) is the gingerbread man (which isn’t visible in this photo.) I can see the nutcracker being another great take off point in the future.
And on the other side of that is the counter with the coffee tray . I have a new coffee maker! It is the “prettiest” one I have ever seen (if you can call a coffee maker pretty.) Our old one takes 45 minutes (no exaggeration here) to make a pot of 10 cups, so I am thrilled to get one that brews it much faster.
On top of the refrigerator is a gingerbread “house” cake in a jar and the platter in my Christmas pattern.
Sweets again. The cereal that normally lives in the cookie jars has to go live in the pantry like the other boring food at Christmas. Cookies get the place of honor there now. You can see a few of the plates from the Christmas pattern up in the plate rack…
and more by the brownies there in the cake stand. (Where in the world are my gingerbread man plates??)
Last year, I made these gingerbread houses and just left them stored in the jars in the island cabinet. Obviously, they are not edible, but it sure saved a lot of time this year. These are my most “beginner” looking ones. I think I have improved a little with the ones made this year.
Here is another closer look at them. (But don’t look too closely – they really aren’t very good.)
And now our little tour is at the table set for Christmas.
It is obviously not a formal table, but our entertaining is not formal either. A casual table suits us much better.
Here is the cabinet in the dining room all done up for Christmas.
I bought these gingerbread men “naked” :) at Fresh Market.
Then my daughter and I had fun “dressing” them.
She decided to make one of them a gingerbread “girl”.
That’s the one that got eaten!
And here are the guys in the jar.
And that concludes our tour of the sweets in the kitchen for this Christmas…and now the boys can begin devouring all the cookies and brownies! Just a reminder that the giveaway for the Christmas books, Thymes candle, and a little surprise is still going on. Details here.
Just leave a comment on any of the Christmas Traditions posts (or on all of them if you’d like more chances to win!) and you will be entered for the drawing. And let me just say…your comments on the last two posts have blown me away! They have been WONDERFUL, and I have enjoyed reading them so very much. From your stories of how books have touched your lives (you all must be great readers!) to creating gingerbread houses with your grandchildren. I can’t thank you enough for sharing your tales here.
Today’s question is more of a practical one. My biggest decorating roadblock every year is trying to come up with a centerpiece for the Christmas table setting. I don’t know why this gives me such a challenge, but it does. So my question for you today is one to help give me some ideas (although I do like the gingerbread house this year.) So please comment.
What do you use for your Christmas table centerpiece?
**Giveaway has closed.**
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