Wednesday, December 19, 2018

'Twas The Hodgepodge Before Christmas...

 Coffee Shop/Post Office in Burford, England

Join Terri and the Gang for

 She writes the questions; we write the answers.
Plug them into your own blog and join in!
Link up at Terri's blog

Thank you so much, Terri, for compiling these questions!

1.  Wednesday, December 19, 2018, is National Hard Candy Day! So the first question today is to ask if you enjoy hard candy, especially the kind we usually see during this festive time of year?  What is your favorite?  Which hard candy brings up the best memories for you if any?
I do like hard candy, as I like all crunchy things. I tend not to let it melt in my mouth, but to crunch it. Any good dentist will tell you that is a bad habit. So I don't eat hard candy anymore. BUT, my favorite were always those little ones that look like raspberries and had something like raspberry jam filling. The one that brings up the best memories is the ribbon candy. We ALWAYS had ribbon candy in our treat bags that were handed out after the church Sunday School Christmas program (along with chocolate drops, another favorite), but my great aunts would buy extremely thin ribbon candy, the kind that was so sharp it would cut your mouth. But it was so exotic, and only they had it, so it was something special - and a fun memory. 
 Christmas Window in Burford (or possibly Fairford), UK

2.  Holiday shopping!  Are you finished? If you could spend an entire day in just one store, which one would it be and why?
I think I'm finished, but it wasn't easy. I did a lot online, then left for nearly 3 weeks in England to return to a lot of jet lag and wondering where I put my Christmas card list (cards which I sent out before we left, but don't remember who was sent a card!) and trying to catch up on last minute gift shopping and grocery shopping for the family who will all be here on Saturday! The store I'd most likely to spend an entire day in? Probably Barnes & Noble. Why? Because it is the only store I can think of that is more relaxing than hassle.
 The George, Southwark

3.  What holiday dessert describes you and why?
I'm not sure how to answer this, but I'd say my favorite would be mincemeat pie. Not mincemeat like you buy in a jar these days, but the mincemeat pie made with REAL beef and suet that my grandma made. It was absolutely delicious. I did look up a recipe and decided that I don't have enough time this year to make it, but maybe next year. What started me thinking about it was the little mince pie I ate in London. They obviously don't have my grandma's recipe. LOL

3" mince pie at Nero's - mostly crust, little mincemeat
I still regret not eating the walnut cake at St. Paul's.

4.  What is your least favorite holiday side dish?
I can't even think what the typical holiday side dishes are. But I will tell you that I bought a ham today that I will baste with homemade duck sauce, which I'd never heard of until a couple nights ago. And strangely enough, it's not made by squeezing a duck, thank goodness. It's a delicious blend of apricots, plums, apple juice, dry mustard, crushed red pepper, cranberry wine, and fresh ginger (This stuff is delicious!) I'm also going to serve a pan of BBQ chicken thighs, a bowl of glazed baby carrots, mashed potatoes, corn, one daughter is making her recipe of Brussels sprouts with bacon, others are bringing a green salad, a fruit salad, olives and pickles, our favorite bakery buns, and frozen custard. Everyone is supposed to  contribute Christmas goodies. I'm also making a cranberry pomegranate punch with ginger ale. So there you have it. And if you show up at 1 PM, we'll share it with you.

For those who wanted the recipe, I used dried fruit, and I think I used 8 oz. pitted plums (chopped), 6 oz. apricots (chopped), a cup of apple juice, a t. of dry mustard, a little crushed red pepper, 1/4 c. cranberry wine, and a t. of fresh ginger, brought it to a boil, then simmered for at least a half hour. Let it cool, run it through a blender or food processor until smooth. Cover and refrigerate. Will stay good for a couple weeks, they say.

Reindeer in Paternoster Square, London
I asked the Santa where his reindeer were from.
He answered, 'Lapland.'
'Yeah, just south of Oxford.' :-)

5.  Now be real!! There is one on almost every tree. What is the ugliest tree ornament you have ever seen?
I honestly can't think of an ugly tree ornament. I did bring back a few tree ornaments as souvenirs of our trip to the UK: a silver roundel with the Cross Keys from York Minster, a St. Nicholas coat of arms ornament from St. George's Chapel, a small Greek icon of the Virgin Mary and Jesus from Westminster Abbey, a beautiful small icon Cross from Southwark Cathedral, a felted Mouse King from Burford, and the cutest little pinecone hedgehog from Lacock. 
 Christmas Tree in Lacock Abbey

6.  Tell us something random about your week!!
This morning I was saying to Mr. C: "Can you believe that four days ago we were at Canterbury Cathedral???" We're both trying to get our body clocks back to Wisconsin time after a fabulous 2 1/2 weeks in England, and my body is refusing to cooperate. But I'm sure it will get there eventually. In the meantime, we've got family coming so food to prepare and beds to make up. We are nearly snowless right now, which is wonderful for me, although a disappointment for my snow-loving friends. I know that eventually we will still get months of snow, so every day without a snowfall is a blessing in my book.
I hope you all have a wonderful and blessed Christmas! It is truly mind boggling that God would stoop to take on human flesh and come into our sinful dysfunction to rescue us. I can't possibly wrap my mind around it, but I can kneel in worship and thank Him. 

  And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, 
and we have seen his glory, 
glory as of the only Son from the Father, 
full of grace and truth. - John 1:14

Have a blessed Christmas, everyone!

P.S. The last photo was taken in St. Paul's Cathedral, with permission, although given grudgingly.
P.P.S. All of our England photos were posted daily on Instagram, so if you're interested and have an IG account, it's @cranberrymorning. 



Related Posts with Thumbnails