Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Traditions

Sometimes I like to shock the world. Every once in a while I can be domestic. I know it's hard to believe, but when given the right inspiration I can bake.

I found a recipe on Pinterest (with my 504 followers just so you know) for Peppermint Chocolate Chip Cheesecake. When I pulled out my spring form pan, Samantha was confounded. Obviously, in her 17 years of life, I have not used this archaic tool for baking frequently.

Peppermint Cheesecake
My dear husband says I just need the right motivation. So he mixed my motivation up in a brown jug: Peppermint White Russian.

Said MOTIVATION in a bottle
Now I know some people need alcohol to help them through the holidays due to too much family time; however, I truly love spending time with my family. Mainly because they make me laugh so hard I end up with tears streaming down my face. 

Sandy & Ruth
When I was younger, my sisters were stuck with me at various times and believe me I'm sure I was not always a pleasure to have around. I was one year old when my oldest sister, Ruth, got married and her daughter was one of my best friends growing up. Now that I am older my relationships with my sisters are so incredible. I feel as if I carry a piece of each one of them inside of me. They helped to form me into the person I am today. My sister, Ruth, has an incredible gift of laughter. My sister, Sandy, taught me the gift of conversation. My mom used to say she could talk to anybody. My sister, Sus, taught me about the gift of true friendship. I can spend hours in silence or deep heartfelt discussions with her. My sister, Pam, taught me the about true love and acts of service. Pam married her high school sweetheart and she's still madly in love with him. I love watching the two of them together. It fills my heart with joy. My sister, Dera, is the one I have been close to throughout my entire life. We've shared so many stories and cried so many tears together. When her life changed, my life changed.

Corey learning about Santa. Don't ask. 
Sometimes people are shocked when I tell them I am the 8th child of 9. Coming from a large family, the holidays have always been hectic and crazy. When I was young, Christmas Eve was the one night when we all try to be together. My dad would order the $5 pizzas from Little Caesar's. In order to work it all off, we'd all go to the basement and play ping pong.

Run, Run as fast as you can GO!

We'd usually start out with a round robin tournament until someone realized they got stuck with the "bad" player. After a few rounds, we'd switch to Run Around the Table Ping Pong playing round after round until we were down to the final two. Then the competition got serious.

Fortunately, the tradition of Cheap Pizza and Mean Ping Pong still continues with my family. Only now we meet at my sister, Sus', house and like this year it's not always on Christmas Eve. Jeff spends the evening talking with my brothers-in-law and I spend my time catching up with my sisters, nieces and nephews. On the way home, we swap stories catching each other up on all of the family news and highlights.

No matter what I am thrilled to spend time with the people who know me best and love me the most. 

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