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Thursday, December 24, 2020

Merry Christmas!

the final Christmas postcard from my collection (see below for info)


Christmas Morning

    "Jo was the first to wake in the gray dawn of Christmas morning. No stockings hung at the fireplace, and for a moment she felt as much disappointed as she did long ago, when her little sock fell down because it was so crammed with goodies. Then she remembered her mother's promise, and slipping her hand under her pillow, drew out a little crimson-covered book. She knew it very well, for it was that beautiful old story of the best life ever lived, and Jo felt that it was a true guide-book for any pilgrim going on a long journey. She woke Meg with a "Merry Christmas." and bade her see what was under her pillow. A green-covered book appeared, with the same picture inside, and a few words written by their mother, which made their one present very precious in their eyes. Presently Beth and Amy woke, to rummage and find their little books also, -- one dove-colored, the other blue; and all sat looking at and talking about them, while the east grew rosy with the coming day."

    From Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, 1832-1888


Love came down at Christmas,
Love all lovely, Love Divine;
Love was born at Christmas,
Star and angels gave the sign.

Worship we the Godhead,
Love Incarnate, Love Divine;
Worship we our Jesus:
But wherewith for sacred sign?

Love shall be our token,
Love shall be yours and love be mine,
Love to God and to all men,
Love for plea and gift and sign.

         Christina Georgina Rossetti, 1830-1894

The postcard at the top of this post is my favorite. It may look older than the others that I showed you, but I know from the stamp that was used that it is the more recent one. This green stamp was issued in 1940. The cancellation on the stamp reads "BUY DEFENSE SAVINGS BONDS AND STAMPS." The use of this cancellation began in 1941 and was replaced with "BUY WAR SAVINGS BONDS AND STAMPS" in 1942. There's a reverse image of a cancellation on the front side of the postcard, suggesting that the ink was fresh on the card or letter just before this one when this one was cancelled and then set on top of it. That cancellation: "New York, Dec 20, 1941" as best as I can make out. 

There is a pre-printed message on this card: "To add to your enjoyment at Christmas time and throughout the coming year. Christian Herald is to be sent to you as a gift." This is followed by "From: Mrs. Frank Panko." The Christian Herald was a weekly newspaper which began publication in the US in 1878. This was evidently a gift subscription notification postcard and holiday greeting postcard in one.

Preparations continue
I made about 1¼ quarts of eggnog Thursday morning and it has been chilling since. We'll offer it at brunch this morning. My cost was about $2.25 total, or about $1.80/quart. That's about $1 less per quart (when bought in 1-quart carton) or about 80 cents less per quart (when bought in 1/2 gal), Walmart's prices. The biggest part of the cost for homemade eggnog is the heavy cream. I used not quite 1½ cups of heavy cream and the rest 2% milk. It might be less expensive to use half-and-half instead of heavy cream and milk, but heavy cream is what I had on hand. 

I also baked a ham on Thursday to slice and reheat for today's brunch. Our brunch menu will be sliced ham, an egg, sausage, and cheese casserole (I assembled it the night before), pepper, onion and mushroom sauté, Crèche bread, applesauce and tangerines, hash browns, juice, and coffee/tea/cocoa/eggnog.

And I made a couple of pizzas on Thursday to use for Christmas dinner tonight (sending some home with my son and daughter-in-law for their dinner). Maybe this will surprise you, but I don't cook a big Christmas dinner for my family. Some years, we get take-out from the only McDonalds in our town that is open on Christmas Day. Other years, I make pizza or something simple like chicken pot pie. Side dishes for our Christmas dinner consists only of fresh fruit, like tangerines. Nothing fancy. By the evening of Christmas Day, I'm quite tired and don't have it in me to do a big dinner. I guess I start my Boxing Day a little before the 26th.

I just want to add . . .

Merry Christmas, all!


  1. And a Merry Christmas to you too! Thanks for the beautiful posts leading up to Christmas. I know it was extra work for you but for me, it was a moment of respite. I love Little Women and immediately recognized your reference. In the book, the girls sacrificially give gifts to their mother and then share their breakfast with a needy family. It's a beautiful picture of selflessness.

    I think your brunch sounds nice and I would definitely count that as preparing a holiday meal! I made cinnamon rolls yesterday for breakfast. We had PB&J for lunch because we needed something light. My hubby, bless his heart, always makes a ham dinner. I try to do minimal work on Christmas. I feel like put in a lot of effort to make Christmas happen and when the day arrives, my gift is a little relaxation.

    I hope you all are having a good day and experiencing love and laughter.

    1. Hi Kris,
      The posts this Christmas week were a bit of an indulgence for myself. I'm just glad that you took it for what I intended, a bit of a break from the hustle and bustle of getting everything together.

      I hope you and your family had a very Merry Christmas, Kris!

  2. The carnivores in the family are making ribs for Christmas dinner. At Thanksgiving we made extra stuffing and potatoes that will be sides along with a salad. I made an apple pie yesterday for dessert and we're good to go. Everyone helps, so it's pretty easy. Now if I can just avoid eating all of the goodies that I've gotten as gifts before dinner is ready.

    Hoping you and your family have a Merry Christmas, Lili, and a Happy New Year!

    1. Hi Live and Learn,
      You were very organized with the extras made on Thanksgiving. What a great idea!

      I hope you and your family had a Merry Christmas, as well, Live and Learn!


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