It’s Christmas Eve. As I sit here, sipping a cup of coffee in preparation for my final shopping trip (um, it turns out I probably shouldn’t have procrastinated quite so much), I’m planning the lunch we’re hosting later today. On the menu, a selection of all the most festive libations from eggnog to cider to Prosecco to hot chocolate (peppermint schnapps included), Edwards country ham, buttermilk biscuits, and a green salad. Please try not to be concerned that I actually just listed four cocktails and only three edibles. Moderation, we’re into it.
I hope you’ve landed wherever you’re going this holiday. May your mug be full of something warming and wonderful, and may all the best, most beautiful things about the season shine through. read more »
Short and sweet weekend links. Good food, plus other stuff. read more »
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“Are you ready for Christmas?” seems to have become the standard holiday greeting, as though kindly store clerks and my fellow moms are wondering if I’ve prepared for the big meeting or finished my taxes. Personally, I miss the days of more joyful holiday wishes. Besides, organization has never been my strong suit; so being reminded of all the work I still need to do cuts deeply.
I take comfort in the fact that my family’s done all the most important things like watch Christmas movies with the kids and bake cookies. The tree we cut down ourselves stands twinkling in the living room. We’ve seen family and gone to recitals. I’ll get to the shopping, eventually. I hope. read more »
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I (really) love to put out a spread of great food and drink, but the last few times I’ve hosted a big party, I’ve felt like I spent the whole party taking coats, mixing drinks, getting appetizers from the oven to the serving tray, instead of actually, y’know, spending time with all these people I like. So lately, as part of my ongoing quest for more meaningful interactions, I’ve been throwing smaller parties of four or five where I really have the time to enjoy the festivities. A few close friends, some good food, and a couple great bottles of wine is always the best.
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Elizabeth and I spend hours each December discussing which version of A Christmas Carol is best (This year I’m kind of leaning toward the Muppets one?). It’s a tough choice because they all have their moments. But the 1951 version is in the running for me every year because of the Cratchit family’s reaction to the goose Bob’s bought –– the sheer joy of a family in tough times savoring a simple pleasure gets me misty every time. I’ve always wanted to get in on some of that Christmas goose joy. But the Christmas goose is a weird thing.
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A few weeks back, I took a press tour of Bold Rock Cider. Our group of journalists, writers, and bloggers visited the Bold Rock cidery, tasted some of their offerings, and met John Washburn and Brian Shanks of Bold Rock, as well as Virginia Secretary of Agriculture Todd Haymore who was there to kick off Virginia cider week. Agriculture is Virginia’s largest industry by a mile and it’s crucial to the state’s future, so it was great to hear Secretary Haymore discuss his stewardship of the state’s agriculture. The focus of the evening, of course, was Virginia apples, so a host of growers and cider producers were also in attendance. read more »