32 years ago I was introduced to an aspect of Christmas about which I had previously been completely ignorant. It was my first Christmas as a married man and Lisa introduced me to Christmas cookies. My life, my holiday season and my waistline have never been the same.
In the midst of the hustle and bustle of shopping and wrapping, as the day approaches, our kitchen changes from ordinary to extraordinary as Lisa is transformed into a baking machine. She bakes and bakes and bakes. There are a number of mandatory items, cookies and treats that are part of every year’s output, such as Christmas sugar cookies (cookie cutter masterpieces covered in sprinkles and red-hots) and cookie press cookies (until Lisa I had no idea that a cookie press was even a thing), and the occasional new recipe gleaned from one of her many cookie cookbooks. The variety is overwhelming.
It is an incredible amount of work and Lisa is typically exhausted and stressed. The morning of Christmas Eve she starts arranging cookie plates for neighbors and friends, each Christmas plate covered with a few of every flavor she baked, wrapped in Christmas themed cellophane and decorated with a bow. It is an impressive sight. Each year I tell her she doesn’t need to do so much and each year she does it anyway. It is the way she is. She wants Christmas to be special for those she loves and cookies are a part of it.
I think it is her love for everyone else that has always amazed me. Christmas changed forever when she came into my life. Now I live in a home filled with decorations and wonderful smells, of Christmas movies and stockings hung by a fire, of hugs and joy and laughter and love. And cookies. Lots of cookies!