Sunday, December 17, 2006

Christmas Crafters on Parade

This weekend Has been the typical "crafter with Christmas closing in" weekend. Friday afternoon after picking up a case of empty bottles from the brewing store for the home made Limoncello for our friends, I went home to finish Shana's Super Secret gift. I have finally finished up everything on this project that needed to be done in advance. That outcome had often been in doubt. I had at various times doubted that even if I did finish it that Shana would like it. I showed it to some friends at breakfast a few weeks ago, and they were very reassuring.

Saturday was devoted to the cookie. Rita was my cookie helper for the day and we were able to crank them out in mass quantities. We made 2 loaves of Brown Irish Soda Bread, Paula Deen's White Chocolate Chunkies, Walnut and Black Pepper Biscotti, Almond Cream Spritz, Russian Tea Cakes, Sugar Cookies, and what was meant to be a pumpkin pressed cookie but ended up being a refrigerator cookie. Still to go: Haystacks. I had some anxiety when my big mixer had a moment of madness and chewed up one beater, but I did not have time to see what caused it. I just continued on with the hand mixer. This will need to be addressed, but not this weekend.

The pumpkin cookie was something of a disaster from the first. I assumed that I had a can of pumpkin in the pantry, but as it turned out I did not. I called Shana (who was out on errands) to pick up a can for me. She did, and I added it to my dough. When I got ready to make them I couldn't help but notice that the texture was AWFUL - a bit like old rubber cement. Turns out I needed only 1/3 cup, not one whole can. Shana again to the rescue. She ran to the corner and I started over. I still could not get them to press properly, so I rolled them up and refrigerated until firm, and sliced. I put sprinkles on before baking so they might look a little festive, but all I can say is it's a good thing I'll have lots of other choices!
Today I made up my office gifts: chicken pincushions. I had printed out some instructions early in the year for them, but of course I couldn't find them when the time arrived. I had been saving up some scraps for this project, supplement by a couple of fat quarters picked up during the year, and a shirt of unwearable cut but darling print which I cut up for projects. They turned out so cute! I can hardly wait to hand them out to my office mates. I've tucked them all into a little basket and I could just about leave them on my kitchen counter for the next week just to enjoy the cuteness.
I'm just about finished with the projects, but we haven't decorated the tree yet. We have one, thanks to Shana, and it's as cute as a button, but is sitting in a temporary spot completely nude. We've been so deep in the other preparations that the house looks like the Wreck of the Hesperus, a situation which must we addressed before the dog disappears under the destruction never to be seen again. It is also not happening tonight. I have got to do something about my nails lest I be mistaken for a homeless person, and I hear the soothing warmth of a bath calling.

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