The Sense of Christmas

pie apple

Steaming hot apple pie

Want to come by?

Getting ready for the first Christmas dinner (tonight with my husband’s family, the second on Christmas Eve with mine), I’ve been dipping luscious red strawberries in chocolate, rolling Peanut Butter Balls in more chocolate, cooking Roundie Brownies to be topped with even more chocolate dipped strawberries, and, of course, the pie. The house smells of cinnamon and chocolate and hot pie crust along with a bit of fresh fir. More baking, more scents still to come.

 

Where I grew up and where I live still, the word ‘scents’ is pronounced ‘sense’ by the locals. (We tend to catch up the last sounds of words and swallow them as if they were drips of honey we can’t bear to completely let fall.) But when we pronounce the word that way, in this case we are getting closer to the reality–because the Scents of this Season really are the Sense of Christmas.

When I was working at my husband’s mother’s yesterday, she heated some oil called Christmas Spirit. As we worked together, the cinnamon and other aromas provided a background of shared cultural and personal memories. The scent gave us the feel and the meaning of Christmas. The smells of Christmas alert us to what we really value, what makes us happy–family, community, sharing. The sense of Christmas, like its scents, intensifies the beauty if the Season.

So light a little oil, bake another pie and share the cinnamony smells of Christmas with the people around you. May the scents intensify the sense of Christmas for you as they have for me these last two days.

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17 comments

  • Mmmmmm. That sounds wonderful!!!!! I love reading all this stuff. You can’t beat the smell of Apple pie.

  • That looks like one delicious pie.

  • That looks like one delicious pie.

  • I, too, love the scents of Christmas but I enjoy them most when they are wrapped around the sounds of the holiday.

    I have spent most of today enjoying the scents of chocolate, cinnamon and one of my very favorite, hot from the oven chocolate chip cookies. They have blended with the sounds of my favorite Christmas CD, “A Dickens’ Christmas…..Inside Fezziwig’s.”
    I am sure I have played it 10 times or more today.

    But the best sound I have had today, is the sharing of stories with my mother. She came to help me roll the peanut butter balls and dip them in chocolate and as we worked she talked of years gone by and the days of working in the pea and cotton fields when she was younger than any of her grandchildren are today. We opened the album containing Dad’s life story and browsed the old black and white photos and talked of beloved family members who are no longer with us.

    It has been a good day, even though the third try at making her famous fudge has failed once again and the decorations aren’t all up. My sense of Christmas has been quite wonderful.
    Hope yours has, too.

  • I, too, love the scents of Christmas but I enjoy them most when they are wrapped around the sounds of the holiday.

    I have spent most of today enjoying the scents of chocolate, cinnamon and one of my very favorite, hot from the oven chocolate chip cookies. They have blended with the sounds of my favorite Christmas CD, “A Dickens’ Christmas…..Inside Fezziwig’s.”
    I am sure I have played it 10 times or more today.

    But the best sound I have had today, is the sharing of stories with my mother. She came to help me roll the peanut butter balls and dip them in chocolate and as we worked she talked of years gone by and the days of working in the pea and cotton fields when she was younger than any of her grandchildren are today. We opened the album containing Dad’s life story and browsed the old black and white photos and talked of beloved family members who are no longer with us.

    It has been a good day, even though the third try at making her famous fudge has failed once again and the decorations aren’t all up. My sense of Christmas has been quite wonderful.
    Hope yours has, too.

  • I had a belly ache last night from eating too many treats. Eating salad for now.

  • I had a belly ache last night from eating too many treats. Eating salad for now.

  • This is the first year in many years that I have actually baked Christmas goodies. Heather was here to do the heavy mixing, while I gathered ingredients, sifted the dry ingredients together, and put cookies onto the cookie sheets. It was a long process, as both of the cookies we made had to be chilled first, and then we decorated the sugar cookies. The house smelled wonderful, and even though my feet are killing me and I’m so tired I could fall asleep in front of the computer, it was wonderful to work together with Heather and make something for Christmas Eve. Makes “scents” to me!

  • This is the first year in many years that I have actually baked Christmas goodies. Heather was here to do the heavy mixing, while I gathered ingredients, sifted the dry ingredients together, and put cookies onto the cookie sheets. It was a long process, as both of the cookies we made had to be chilled first, and then we decorated the sugar cookies. The house smelled wonderful, and even though my feet are killing me and I’m so tired I could fall asleep in front of the computer, it was wonderful to work together with Heather and make something for Christmas Eve. Makes “scents” to me!

  • I have to agree about the sounds of Christmas being so important and the best sounds are the sounds of people sharing their lives and the laughter that goes with that.

    I just spent the evening with my husband’s family and the talking and reconnecting and laughing made Christmas drape its arm over my shoulder and sit down with me for a nice long visit.

    This is why we work and clean and cook so we can be with each other.

  • I have to agree about the sounds of Christmas being so important and the best sounds are the sounds of people sharing their lives and the laughter that goes with that.

    I just spent the evening with my husband’s family and the talking and reconnecting and laughing made Christmas drape its arm over my shoulder and sit down with me for a nice long visit.

    This is why we work and clean and cook so we can be with each other.

  • Mmmm that looks tasty.
    I’m coming over.

  • Mmmm that looks tasty.
    I’m coming over.

  • By the time you’d get here we’ll have eaten it all but I promise to make a new one just for you.

  • By the time you’d get here we’ll have eaten it all but I promise to make a new one just for you.

  • Now that is some good home cookin’.

  • Now that is some good home cookin’.

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