Kinda Sorta, Almost Rocked Christmas!

While I will not go as far as to say that "I rocked Christmas," I will say that I felt some of the magic, and Christmas was enjoyed more this year than it was the last two years. I am even sad that the holiday is over. I am also more than somewhat disappointed that it is time to take the decorations down and put the lights away. Do I have to, Mom? (I know that the answer to this is yes because every single time I speak to my mother, she asks if I have taken my Christmas decorations down. Okay, I've got it, Mom!) Who says that Christmas decorations cannot stay up until well into February (That would be my mother)? Is there a rule written somewhere because I have not seen it, and frankly, I would probably just decide that it does not apply to me!

I am thoroughly convinced in order to enjoy something as we did as children, as an adult, is to rid our minds of all of our preconceived notions about the way that things should be, or the way that they were. Seriously, when we build things up in our minds, we are bound to be disappointed. Our minds have a way of spinning things to make them better than what they actually were. As adults, we just are not the same as what were as children. I guess to some, this might seem like a good thing, but in a way, I find it rather sad. So many things had a magic sparkle to them as a child. I guess that I am having a hard time with this concept, and will probably spend the rest of my life trying to make my life just as magical as it was a child. Probably a better idea would be to work on embracing whatever magic does get thrown my way and not comparing it to the ideas that I have in my head. Yes, there is a viable thought. I absolutely refuse to give up on this notion completely, though!

I found myself throughout the holiday season turning the Christmas music on every morning and looking forward to the tree lighting up at 5:00. At some point, I gave up and thought it silly to wait until 5:00 to enjoy the tree and just turned it on. It is still on, all day, every day. Jazzy kept turning it off and on anyway and it was making me insane. At some point, I will probably regret this decision as I am sure that bulbs are going to burn out. But, that is what that whole bag of spare bulbs is for, if I could find it, that is.

Maybe I need to rewind here a bit. What does the perfect Christmas look like in my screwy brain, and how did that "home movie" get there in the first place? I think that is an excellent question. I am bright enough to know that while the "magical Christmas" that exists in my brain and that I have always longed for, resembles a Hallmark channel movie, which it is television. I am not trying to be difficult; I just want to experience even just a bit of the holiday romance that exists in the movies that I found myself watching throughout the season. However, a walk down a snow covered lane, holding hands, wearing mittens, and catching snowflakes on my tongue is probably an unrealistic expectation. It is rather challenging to build a snowman when you live in central Florida and have no snow.

Clockwise from the top left corner: Peanut Butter Blossoms,
Cranberry Orange Macadamia White Chocolate,
Old Fashioned Shortbread, Butterfinger, Andes Mint Spearmint,
White Chocolate Candy Cane, M&M Pudding, German Chocolate Cake,
Softbatch CreamCheese Chocolate, Turtle Cookies,
and Strawberry Chocolate Chip Cookies, and missing from the small images,
but not the cookie tray: Lady Locks.
My Christmas Cookie Madness, or my OCBD (obsessive cookie baking disorder) as my friends have come to refer to it, was a tremendous part of my Christmas magic. Admittedly, for someone who has the attention span of a boxer puppy surrounded by 3000 squeaky balls, baking had its challenges. Despite the challenges, it brought a lot of joy to my heart. Giving of ourselves is the best way to experience the magic of Christmas. 

  • There was the moment when I realized that 1/2 of the butter that was supposed to be in the dough that was chilling in the fridge and was not supposed to be taking up space in the microwave. Oops. 
  • There was the moment when I realized that the cinnamon and sugar was supposed to be sprinkled on the outside of the cookies, not blended in as I had done. Oops. 
  • There was the moment when I realized that my storage plan was sorely missing good judgment. Stacking several bags of cookies in Ziploc bags was a poor choice. But, I did not know that until I opened the freezer and had a "cookie slide" that resembled a mud slide. Yes, I had choice words. Oops.
  • There was the moment when I realized that the heat was negatively impacting my lady lock filling and it was dripping right back out the other end of the cookies and all over me, the counter, and my cabinets. Oops.
  • There was the moment when I found myself standing in the middle of the back yard involved in an active tug-o-war match with Jazzy and realized that I still had a tray of cookies in the oven. Oops.
  • There was the moment when I remembered that I had put a tray of cookies on top of the freezer to keep Duke from counter surfing, but had forgotten and opened the freezer door only to have the whole tray on the floor. Oops.
I know that there were more baking foibles than what I have shared here, but as you have probably guessed, I have forgotten. Despite all of the challenges, and as you can see, there were a lot of them, my cookie baking project was a huge joy to me and to each of my friends and neighbors that I shared the trays with. This baking frenzy will be a part of my Christmas traditions from this point on. I am looking forward to next year, even though I will struggle with the few pounds that I was unfortunate enough to acquire for the next month or so. I shipped a box of cookies to my parents, and they arrived unbroken and seemingly unaffected! So now I know that I can send my cookie joy all over the country!

I made new memories that will forever be etched in my brain as a part of Christmas 2015, While the day that my best buddy and I spent rolling and wrapping lady locks was a long, hot day, we had a lot of fun and did a wonderful job of entertaining each other. Baking is so much more fun when you have a partner in crime. Despite the fact that while I jotted around Orlando passing out cookies and visiting with friends on Christmas Eve, Duke managed to free Jazzy from her crate and she roamed freely about the house for an unknown number of hours, Christmas Eve was wonderful for me! (Just for the record, nothing was touched, and there were no accidents! "GOOD PUPPY!" Duke still needs to explain!)

I am confident that next Christmas will be even better and I cannot wait to see what Christmas 2016 has in store for me. But, most importantly, I am looking forward to it rather than dreading it. I remain headstrong in my resolution to not let bad memories keep me from making new ones. Yes, "I've got this!"

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