Ten years ago at Christmas, my mother gave all her children a recipe book that she made from all her most favorite recipes that she used when we were growing up. It is a wonderful present which I use on a regular basis. It contains recipes for casseroles, salads, cakes, pies and cookies and more, plus special breakfasts and things like granola. I just love it because I know I’m making something for my own children that came from my mother and some from her mother as well.

It contains a recipe for sugar cookies which I always use at Christmas to make Christmas cookies. It takes ages to decorate them because it makes 36! My ten year old daughter Anna Grace does an excellent job with the decorating part. Much much better than I – you can tell how much she enjoys it and her creativity really shows through. Mine are indicative of someone who is enjoying it but knows there is a lot of mess to clean up and there is also dinner to make and laundry to do! Each year I get messier and each year Anna Grace gets more clever with her decorations. Jonah, who is four, did an excellent job of eating his so I didn’t get a chance to photograph any! Samuel, who is twelve, declined this year, preferring his computer game to decorating (but not to eating!).

Merry Christmas mom and thanks so much for everything you cooked and baked for us when we were little, your British grandchildren are now eating and making what you made for us.

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