Friday, December 6, 2013

7 Quick Takes

1.  Happy Saint Nicholas Day! better watch out...I suddenly find new amusement in that song.

2. Planning to make my great grandmother's cookies but with a Christmas twist, dipping them in melted white chocolate for frosting and dusting with peppermint chips.  They're chocolate cookies so this will be a lovely combination.
This image looks pretty much like what they look like when they haven't been frosted. 

Here's the recipe.  Why? Because these sorts of cookies aren't made anymore, they're becoming lost as we get used to slice and bake and forget there were all these sort of old fashioned tastes that had seasonal qualities and harkened to how baking itself, is both a joy and a gift.  The goal isn't just the sweet but the giving/sharing of the sweet.

1/4 cup solid shortening (Crisco)
1 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 cup sifted all purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 squares Baker's unsweetened chocolate
1/2 cup chopped nuts (pecans work great)
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Combine the first four ingredients. Add the dry ingredients together separately.  Combine all the ingredients and stir until the mixture is well blended.  Drop the cookies with a teaspoon onto an ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes.  After the cookies cool, frost with a light chocolate frosting.  It can be one cup of confectioner's sugar, 1 tablespoon of milk, and 1 melted square of Baker's semi-sweet, mixed and then used to dip.

Or you can use ready made if you're like me and somehow those glazes never turn out quite right.    

3.  Doing a little Christmas each day is working (so far, but then it's only been 5 days).   We set up the Nativity set one day, another day, we wrote a few Christmas cards.  The day before that, we put up some lights indoors, and the day before that, lights outdoors. (Just a few).  We're just adding a bit by bit each day.  Theme of Advent: Blessed Waiting, Deliberate Willful Beauty.

4.  How are book sales doing?

Well, believe it or not, people don't know I' wrote a book, or that it is published. I got asked today.
Having spent six years writing The Book of Helen, I  know it has moments which will stay with you, and that the story itself has some real beauty to offer.

Here's a link.   If you have bought The Book of Helen and enjoyed it, please consider leaving a review over at Amazon, it helps with ranking, it helps with promotion.

5.  How is The Book of Penelope Coming?

Still reading, still writing, still taking the 30 day novel writing workshop.  I'm starting to see patterns and threads of thought so to speak.  I also miss my laptop.  It has been in the shop since November 13th.  It is very frustrating. But, I have the story, I have an outline (shocker).  I have the ending.  I have the template for what I want to have happen, and I have 15K on it without having the actual work I did before, so I'm very pleased.

6.  I want more variety in my Christmas songs.  Honestly, if you're going to tout yourself as the Christmas station, have enough guts to play something other than The Little Drummer Boy,White Christmas, and I saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus.   So in a fit of wanting more, I provide you with the following, it's old, but it doesn't matter. It's still good.  

7.  What am I doing this year spiritually?  Well, I'm trying to get beyond the surface of my prayer life, to navigate the interior life that I spend so much time avoiding by keeping very busy.  In an attempt to jump start myself into this deeper form of prayer, I'm hoping to schedule a weekly visit to adoration, to demand I quiet my mind and heart before the Lord, something I'm notoriously bad at doing.   In the meantime, I also found this site, worthy of note for those like me who can't get to adoration as often as they should.   It's a substitute, but a substantive substitute.  Here is the link to view live adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think that these may be the best cookies in the whole world. Every time I received a box of these, people came from all over to sample. We began hoarding them, and only letting a privileged few lnow when the cookies had arrived.

Leaving a comment is a form of free tipping. But this lets me purchase diet coke and chocolate.

If you sneak my work, No Chocolate for You!