Listening to A Charlie Brown Christmas by Vince Guaraldi takes me back to my 1950’s, free range childhood. We rode our bikes for miles around the neighborhoods because we knew who lived there and usually the moms were at home. Everyone baked Christmas cookies and we sampled them at every house. The excitement of the holidays kept building with stacks of cards coming in the mail and family dropping off presents placed under the real tree. The candlelight service on Christmas Eve was the climax and opening presents early the next morning was a fitting denouement.
Recreating the absolute peace and security of those Christmases with my own children has been hard because the story has changed. They can no longer roam freely and we don’t know all of our neighbors. However, we still have Vince G., and new traditions which include lots of cookies.
What do you do with anger? Do you express it in a personally responsible way or do you follow my solution . . . stay away from the offending person and consume three turtle candies in quick succession. At least they help me to calm down and think about why I’m angry. Usually it’s life and people not doing what I think they should be doing. Of course, I, Me, Mine is the operative driving force. What ever happened to righteous anger? I don’t think I’ve ever experienced it.
Some day soon I will have to learn how to release my anger in a healthy way that corresponds with serene conflict resolution principles. Until that day comes I hope they keep making turtles because I think they are keeping me out of jail.
The night before a Christmas cookie swap, I was mixing up cookie dough and decided to use some of the opened bakers chocolate stored in the spice cupboard. First mistake, the chocolate tasted like all of the ingredients it had been stored with. Second mistake, mixing the dough with a Kitchenaid paddle that was losing it’s plastic coating. After removing the paddle from the dough there was an even larger area of exposed metal than when I started and it ended up in the cookie dough. The obvious remedy was to search through the cookie dough for the large piece of white plastic and throw it out, pretending that the cookie dough is still edible. Unfortunately, the plastic had been pulverized into tiny, white, grains by a very efficient Kitchenaid mixer. This brings us to the moral dilemma of swapping cookies with unsuspecting friends, when I know that they will be consuming plastic but they don’t know it. That would be the third mistake. Once baked, the cookies had an essence of spice cupboard to go along with the plastic. So, being the last-minute, resouceful, moral person that I am, I will throw out my cookie dough and buy sugar cookie dough from Uncle Ralph’s. Pink sugar decorations add to the homemade appearance. Then, if my unsuspecting friends want to swap amusing stories along with their cookies they can read my blog.