Countdown Begins

Christmas is coming!  It’s really coming!  We are so excited we can almost taste it!

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These cornflake wreath cookies are a new recipe I tried this year.  They exist somewhere in the range of “OMG, I can’t believe you made those artificial-looking old-fashioned things” to “OMG, these are my FAVORITE!  These things are so tacky but I LOVE them!”

In our house they are unquestionably delicious.   Not to mention easy, pretty, and fun.  I took them to the school for a class Christmas party and had to add some snickerdoodles to cover up the spots where we ate them off the tray.  Jake and Eli said “They were a hit, Mom!”  Happy Mom.

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It’s been a whirlwind two weeks of baking, wrapping, and elfing.  I guess in today’s world there is also “ordering.”  Here are my elves writing Christmas cards and helping to make Christmas baskets for our friends.

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There are tons of official rules about “giving gifts” when you work for the USG.  Well, actually the rules are more about receiving gifts than giving them, but whatever, I always bake for my staff because I think nobody cares much about that.  And it’s fun for me.  This year I made pumpkin bread, toffee squares, almond apricot shortbread, oatmeal cranberry white chip cookies, snickerdoodles, and of course wreath cookies!  No cut-out cookies or gingerbread though.  It’s weird not to make those but I’m anticipating a lot of gingery spiced things in Strasbourg.

This is what our kitchen counter looks like in the morning, when we wake up to do the Lego advent calendar.  Jakey got the snowman at school.

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Here is Eli catching a huge bullfrog.  At night we hear the loudest frogs!  It’s so crazy to hear them croaking.  They are seriously loud!

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Now that school is out, Jake and Eli are also keeping themselves busy “farming” in the backyard.

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The best part about right now is that Santa is Real.  The air is still full of painful anticipation (can we open our presents yet?) and our little boys are still under the spell of believing that their parents know everything.  For a Mom and a Dad who believe the magic too, life could not get any better than this.

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So today when I dropped off Jake and Eli at their Sports Camp, I had to take a deep breath when we approached the group of kids, and Jake let go of my hand.

I can feel that the world is growing so much bigger to them now, so much more than just Mom and Dad.

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Standing there in the parking lot with all the other kids around, I was careful to ask when I said good-bye whether is was okay to give them a kiss.  They both said yes.  I guess they are still mine for a little longer!  But the clock is ticking.  I suppose the clock is always ticking.  A countdown of another sort, that involves the innocence of much more than Santa.  All the more reason to reach out and grab life with both hands.

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So on to Strasbourg!  Our Christmas Adventure begins tomorrow!!

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