Christmas Chronicles: Crafting Joy and Handmade Magic in the Homestead

Christmas Chronicles: Crafting Joy and Handmade Magic in the Homestead

Hey there, festive friends! Can you believe it's that magical time of the year again? I, for one, am absolutely thrilled about Christmas – I might even beat the sun up at 5:30 AM, a good hour and a half before my usual wake-up time. The joy of seeing loved ones unwrap their surprises is something I look forward to every year.

This past weekend, we soaked up the holiday spirit by checking out the Christmas parades in our local villages and cities. Cruising around to admire the twinkling lights and decorations is a tradition my partner and I cherish. We capped off the evening with a delightful dinner and a visit to the Beehive Nursing Home in Bosque Farms. Trust me, their light display is a spectacle! Coordinated with music on an FM simulcast, it repeats every 15 to 20 minutes – pure Christmas magic. Our drive through neighborhoods with houses decked out in festive glory was the perfect encore. There's this one neighborhood off Coors on Garner where the Christmas spirit is so contagious that traffic comes to a standstill. Bumper to bumper, but oh, so worth it!

These luminous displays instantly transport me back to my childhood. My Grandma used to take us on drives to admire Christmas lights, usually a weekend in early December. It was a special tradition – a getaway while our parents did their Christmas shopping. The destination? A village where almost every house lit up their yard and lawn. And let me tell you, it was, and still is, a sight to behold.

Our own Christmas traditions are flexible, especially when it comes to the big day. If Marlee's parents are in town, we align our plans with Mom and Dad's schedules to have the kids over. Lately, our family dinner has shifted closer to Christmas, probably on a Saturday this year. As for the menu, it's a bit of a wildcard – sometimes a classic ham, or we might treat ourselves to some delicious takeout from a local joint. Last year, we devoured some amazing chicken pot pies from Green Bistro in Tome – a bit of a drive, but totally worth it.

Now, let's talk about my love affair with eggnog. From Thanksgiving to Christmas, you'll find me sipping on this delightful concoction. I've even tried my hand at making my own in the past, and let me tell you, it was a game-changer. It took some patience (a week or so, to be exact), but the result was a sugar-free eggnog that was simply heavenly. The store bought one we had this Thanksgiving was almost like syrup it had so much sugar.

Even though the Christmas season is the craziest time for our shop, we always carve out a little space for our personal projects. This year, most of our gifts are coming from fellow vendors at the craft shows we attend, but we're still crafting a few handmade gems. There's just something extra special about giving a gift that's made with your own two hands, don't you think? Wishing you all a season filled with love, joy, and all the handmade goodness in the world!

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