Wednesday, December 09, 2020

Wednesday Hodgepodge Bake-Off

From this Side of the Pond
1. What do you think it means to have the holiday spirit? 

I think we have to be careful about how we do or don't define it.

My mother loved watching holiday T.V. specials as much as the kids did. She was particularly fond of the original Grinch special, and although our Christmas decorations and food often did look somewhat Who-ville-ish, we did get the point that "Christmas Day is in our grasp, as long as we have hands to clasp."

But when the hands are no longer there, for whatever reason? Or in a year when you can get fined for clasping those that are? Or for doing the other simple Who things such as singing in public? The Christmas world has turned virtual and drive-by, and that leaves out an awful lot of people who don't have computers, or cars, or who just can't fathom it all. 

Is the holiday spirit only effective if we can pretend that everything is good and normal?

Actually, for Christians, I think it's the other way around (and I'm not the only person to say this). Perhaps, if our own Advent seasons have always been cheerful and "normal," we now have an opportunity to better understand the darkness, and to trust less to the things of our own making, more in God. It also puts more responsibility on us to be aware of those who are troubled or alone.

Maybe that's the holiday spirit.
"In deepest night, in darkest days,
When harps are hung, no songs we raise.
When silence must suffice as praise,
Yet sounding in us quietly, there is the song of God."
~~ Susan Palo Cherwien, "In Deepest Night"

2. What's one thing you've baked this month? Have you eaten the finished product? How much baking do you do around the holidays? What baked sweet something does your family insist is on the menu during this season of the year? 

I have not done any baking at all, and our eating of cookies has consisted of Chips Ahoy and a bag of chocolate-covered lebkuchen.

However, I've had requests for a couple of our Christmas standards like Apricot Slice (what the girls called Fairy Dust Bars) and cheater fudge. I think I might cut the recipe for Apricot Slice in half this year, though, because it makes a big panful.

3. Your most recent 'half-baked' idea?

Not sure about that one.

4. Where were you the last time you 'baked' in the sun? The top ten sunniest destinations in the world (most sun from January-December according to this site) are Dubai, Bali Indonesia, Los Angeles CA, Miami FL, Barbados, Dominican Republic, St. Lucia, Mauritius, Antiqua, and the Canary Islands Spain. Have you been to any of the cities listed? Which one on the list appeals to you the most? If the world were not upside down crazy and you could lie on a beach anywhere right now where would you go?

I have not been to even one of those, but the Canary Islands sound nice. Or somewhere like Corfu. If it weren't December, Lake Huron would do fine.

5. Today I wish I had more _____________________.

I could answer that one in a lot of ways, most of them not that helpful.

How about yarn? I like to crochet, but I've let my stash get down to almost nothing. Maybe in the new year I'll work on thrifting some extra yarn and try out some things I've saved on Pinterest.

6. Random thoughts:

Family gathering about twenty-two years ago. Me, my kids, my mom, my grandma. Hands to clasp (and good bakers too).

Linked from The Wednesday Hodgepodge at From This Side of the Pond.


songbird's crazy world said...

Chips Ahoy, yeah, I buy them too

Willow said...

I love your answer to the first question. We hear the song of God when everything else is silent.
Now I am craving a peppermint chocolate cookie!
Cute photo at the end and good memories.

Joyce said...

Your answer to #1 is definitely something to ponder. We tend to think everyone is 'tech' to some degree these days but so many are not, particularly older folks who perhaps are also alone. I never buy store bought cookies. I am not sure why, I guess we just don't eat a lot of cookies in general, but when we do I enjoy baking. Merry Christmas to you and yours!

Lisa said...

Your answer to number one really resonates with me. Advent has been a different season this year. We are offering limited in person worship but the covid numbers are so high that my hubby and I have continued to worship at home via livestream. Our church still does a radio broadcast for those who aren't tech savvy and that has really helped people like my mother-in-law, who is 95. My husband has drawn a with a marker on her radio so she knows which channel each week.

ellen b. said...

Sweet photo at the end. I enjoyed reading your answers. May we be mindful of those who are isolated and need a special touch of encouragement this Christmas.