Yudetide decorating

Yudetide decorating

Most people look forward to the day after Thanksgiving as a traditional day of shopping. My children look forward to this as the day we start decorating for Christmas.

The eyes of my children widen as we unload all the special decorations that we've collected throughout the years. They each have their own memory of a certain favorite, and they know exactly where we place it each year. Some years I like to put things in a different location, or perhaps not unpack a certain one.

My children are the first to recognize that something is missing or not in its place.

When I was a child, some of my most memorable Christmas decorations were the cardboard Pepsi Santas, and a Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus that was always placed atop the television set. We also had one of those plastic Santa faces for the front door. Since it lit up, we couldn't wait to plug it in after dark.

We had plenty of homemade ornaments that we made in school. We felt proud decorating the tree with them. Our Christmas tree never had a particular theme or a certain color, it was more or less a children's tree decorated with homemade paper chains, and popcorn strung along with cranberries.

After my husband and I were married, our first Christmas tree was pretty sparse.

We bought many of our ornaments, and as the years went by before the children arrived, we collected different decorations.

Once we had children, we started a tradition which carries through to this day. Our children each receive their own special ornament at Christmastime. The kids love to unpack these special treasures when we decorate the tree. We date each of the ornaments, and it gives them some clue of how little they were when they received it.

The kids also enjoy making their own Christmas tree decorations at home and in school. My mom and dad kept most all of the decorations I made when I was a child. I had forgotten about these until they presented them to me a few years ago. My children love to place on the tree the homemade angel made out of pea-green yarn, and the Christmas bulb with my name written in glue and glitter.

Our tree reminds me of the one I had as a child. It never really has a color theme or ornaments that match. But by looking at the ornaments, it gives you plenty of memories of the years gone by.

My children don't know it yet, but the reason we have given them an ornament every year is for when the day arrives that they either get married, or find a home of their own. They will be given a box, filled with all their special ornaments and homemade decorations to trim their first Christmas tree with. That's when my husband and I will have to start looking for more decorations to fill the branches of our own little tree.

If you have a special holiday recipe that you would like to share, please feel free to share it with our readers. You can send your recipes, requests, or comments to:

Jennifer Henry

"Mom, What's for Dinner?"

c/o The Citizen

25 Dill St.

Auburn, NY 13021

Or send them via e-mail to: momwhatsfordinner@yahoo.com.

Thanks to St. Joseph's School, Berneta, Anne, Jeanne and Ann for their special favorites this week!

Here is an easy homemade ornament recipe courtesy of St. Joseph's School Cookbook. This would be a perfect project for children to make for their teachers, grandparents and friends.

CINNAMON ORNAMENTS

Ingredients:

3 / 4 cup cinnamon

1 teaspoon allspice

1 teaspoon nutmeg

2 teaspoons ground cloves

1 cup applesauce

Directions:

Mix all the ingredients together.

Roll out in cinnamon until dough is 1/4-inch thick.

Cut out your favorite shapes, and poke a hole with a straw at the top.

Let dry.

Berneta Terry of Union Springs shares her favorite Christmas cookie recipe with us. She makes these every year and tells me that they will store very well in a cool place throughout the holiday season. The cookies mail well, and they are delicious with a hot cup of tea and special friends.

DATE LOGS

Ingredients:

16 ounces pitted dates, cut up very fine

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup butter

1 egg

2 cups Rice Krispies

1 cup finely chopped walnuts

Coconut or confectionery sugar

Directions:

Mix the dates, sugar, butter, and egg in a saucepan and cook until thick over low heat.

Add the Rice Krispies and walnuts.

Form the dough into 1-inch "logs" and roll in coconut or confectionery sugar.

Anne Tedesco of Auburn sent me quite a variety of her favorite Christmas cookie recipes to share with you.

Here is another that sounds wonderful!

BUTTER NUTS

Ingredients:

3/4 cup margarine

1/2 cup powdered sugar

1 3/4 cup flour

1 #) 6-ounce package butterscotch chips

1 cup finely chopped pecans

Glaze:

2 cups powdered sugar

1/4 cup rum

Candied cherries

Directions:

In a bowl beat the margarine and sugar at high speed until fluffy. Add the flour. Stir in the chips and pecans.

Shape the dough into small balls. Place on baking sheets and bake in a 325-degree oven for 15 minutes.

Prepare the glaze by beating together the powdered sugar and rum. Divide this mixture into three separate containers.

Color one container red, one green, and leave one plain.

Glaze each cookie top, and put a quarter piece of candied cherry on top of each.

Ann Yarmer of Seneca Falls was another entrant for the Homemaker School Recipe Contest.

She sent along this recipe as one of her family favorites.

SURPRISE COOKIES

Ingredients:

3 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

Dash of salt

1/2 cup chopped nuts

1 cup Crisco

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 eggs

2 teaspoons water

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

Pink Confectionery Coating Wafers (about 8 ounces)

Directions:

Mix the flour, baking soda, salt, and chopped nuts together. Set aside.

One ingredient at a time, cream the shortening, sugars, eggs, water and almond extract. Beat well after adding each ingredient.

Gradually add the flour mixture and then drop by teaspoon onto a greased cookie sheet 2 inches apart.

Press in one of the pink wafers and cover with another teaspoon of dough.

Bake in a 375-degree oven for 10 to 12 minutes.

Are you still trying to find a use for the leftover turkey?

Jeanne Galbally sends along this easy recipe for a quick dinner idea.

EASY TURKEY POT PIE

Ingredients:

2 cups (10 3/4 ounces each) cream of chicken or cream of mushroom soup

2 packages frozen mixed vegetables, thawed

2 cups cooked, cubed turkey

1/2 cup milk

1 egg

1 cup Bisquick

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a 2 1/2 quart casserole dish, mix the soup, vegetables, and turkey.

In a separate bowl mix the milk, egg, and Bisquick. Pour this mixture over the turkey and vegetables.

Bake uncovered for 35 minutes, or until golden brown.

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