All around the house, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Although we Catholics are still technically celebrating the season of Advent, Christmas is right around the corner. Bill and I are throwing a party for some friends tonight. I haven’t had a Christmas party for anyone other than family in years. I’m pretty excited, so I decorated the house with almost everything I own. It’s been a blast to uncover all of my decorations and to pull growing bulbs from the greenhouse.
So far, I have amaryllis, orchids, hyacinths, non-stinky paperwhites and lily of the valley because blooming plants beat the winter blues. Only the amaryllis and orchids are actually blooming. The others are growing and will probably be ready by January’s Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day.
Our family party will still happen, as it always does, on Christmas Eve.
Bill and I found this silver-plated punchbowl at one of our local antique stores in Guthrie. The store is Magnolia and was named years before Chip and Joanna Gaines took their company to the national stage. The punchbowl belonged to a young woman’s grandparents. She didn’t want to polish it so it was languishing. I bought some amazing Wright’s Silver Cream, and Claire and I fixed it up in a jiffy. I’m going to serve Martha Stewart’s eggnog in it. Won’t that be splendid?
[Click on the photos in the galleries to make them larger.]
I love poinsettias. My mom made the bowl, below, when I was in high school in the late 70s. It’s one of my favorite things, but I’m taking it to her apartment this week. When I helped her move a couple of months ago, I took her Christmas decorations and put them in a separate place in my closet. I accidentally didn’t get this one to her because it was in a different box. That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it. Ha!
My mom was really talented at ceramics, and I’m grateful I have a Santa and a bell she made. I’ll need to give her bowl back.
For the food, I made David Lebovitz’s spicy pretzel and nut mix, his green olive almond tapenade. I also took a play from his book L’Appart: The Delights and Disasters of Making My Paris Home. In France, hosts rely upon good food prepared by locals instead of making everything themselves which is a brilliant idea.
I bought a wonderful selection of hard and soft cheeses including a lovely brie that I’m going to top with honey, almonds, and amaretto on advice from my friend, Gabi. With it, I’ll serve the best gluten-free crackers, Simple Mills naturally gluten-free seal salt/almond flour crackers. All of Simple Mills’ flavors are great, but because I wanted the cheeses and olive tapenade to shine, I chose the sea salt ones, along with rosemary & sea salt ones. If you ever find their barbecue ones, get them.
My daughter, Megan, is making cherries in the snow, one of the prettiest and easiest Christmas desserts out there. She’ll make the angel food cake gluten-free with Kinnikinnick gluten-free angel food cake mix. Angel food cake is one of the easiest cakes to make gluten free because it is mostly egg whites and sugar.
My best friend, Aimee, is making gingerbread cookies. Yum. I have See’s almond covered toffee if I don’t eat it all beforehand. There are also sausage balls which I need to figure out how to make gluten-free. If I accomplish it, I’ll try to post the recipe here. We’ll also have a vegetable tray so we’re healthy. Insert laughing here.
I’m serving some sparkling wines, iced tea, coffee, Coke and Sprite bottled in Mexico (with real sugar) and of course, eggnog. If anyone else wants to mix a drink, they are welcome to do so. Sounds like fun, doesn’t it?
What kind of parties are you having in the next few weeks?
This post is part of Carol Michel’s Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day. Thank you for again hosting Carol. MWAH!
Also, this post does contain a few affiliate links from Amazon to help me pay for disk space to host the blog. I recently had to update hosting, and it does cost me monthly to maintain the space. After ten years of blogging, this little blog has become quite bloated, and I may be too after tonight’s party.
Merry Christmas Everyone!