I've been lucky since I've moved to the Triangle that my work schedule has allowed me to join in on these festive occasions. In the past I've always had to cut my visits short or show up fashionably late due to my service industry themed jobs. Even though this year I have two jobs, I was determined to keep my schedule open for this convivial affair. The morning started out like any other. I basically woke up with half the amount of time I deem necessary to get ready. The cookie making was to start proximately at 9. Jane and I left her house about 9:10 with a half an hour drive to Sara's ahead of us. In my need to divert hunger, I suggested we stop at Chick-fil-A or McDonald's. A bacon, egg and cheese biscuit was calling my name...so McDonald's it was. Rarely do I become annoyed at fast food restaurants since I've had the pleasure of working in one, but it was too early for the nonsense that ensued. In order to ensure fast and effective service, this particular McDonald's has two speaker boxes in which to place your order. The annoying part about this particular concept is that the first speaker box is several yards from the menu. Unless you frequent McDonald's enough to know your order by heart, the menu is a vital step in the decision process. At the first speaker, the friendly employee asks for our order. We replied that we weren't sure what we wanted and that we needed to see the menu. The speaker goes quiet. About thirty seconds later "How can I help you?" I politely respond with "We are waiting to see the menu." Again about 20 seconds later, "Can I help you with your order?" "No. We are waiting to see the menu." At this time I beginning to get annoyed simply at the fact that the
woman car in front of us seems to be taking an exceedingly long amount of time to order what I would imagine is a quite simple order. Again, the ever so pleasant voice from the speaker box graces us with her presence. "How can I help you?" At this point I choose to completely ignore her. Thankfully, the car in front of us has pulled forward and we are now able to make concrete decisions regarding our hunger pains. All is well, we get our food and I also get my much need caffeine and begin to pull out of the restaurant. I handed Jane her two hash browns and orange juice while I started unwrapping the bacon, egg and cheese I've been craving all morning. To my dismay, it is a sausage biscuit. I "flipped a bitch" and headed straight back to the restaurant. Our trip is now delayed by another ten minutes.
We arrived at Sara's exactly an hour behind schedule. Gam-Mah and Eva were already cutting out the sugar cookies while Ruth was taking a crack at the famous Farmor Rye bread.
|Gam-Mah passing down the tradition|
I will admit that I find myself more of a hindrance during the cookie making process than a helping hand. Eva probably contributed more in her enthusiasm than I did in my desire to stay out of the way. We made the traditional sugar cookies, date balls, Danish (?) wedding cookies, and peanut butter cookies. I had the pleasure of assembling the peanut butter cookies. Other than licking the batter from the mixers, I can't tell you if the cookies turned to perfection once baked. This is probably the first time while making cookies that I didn't end up with a sick stomach from a sugar, raw egg overload. I found it terribly entertaining that Eva sat so patiently on the counter while helping her mother mix ingredients for additional cookies. I can definitely say that I already see the Eslinger in her. She insisted on changing her shirt because it was dirty from all of the flour and batter. She went from her favorite pink princess shirt to her second favorite, yellow monkey shirt.
|Her version of helping|
On a personal note, I was quite happy to see the progress mom made on my Christmas stocking. It has taken the better half of a decade to complete but I won't harp on that since to be frankly honest, my mother is a busy bee. But I will say that I have the BEST christmas stocking of all. :) It isn't quite complete but if all things go well, it should be done by Christmas time. Now I need to find the time to work on Brian's. I'm not sure which is more difficult: finding the time to work on the stocking or getting Brian to make a decision on what he wants stitched.
|A decade in the making|
You don't choose your family. They are God's gift to you, as you are to them. ~Desmond Tutu
|My beautiful niece, Eva Louise|