At Christmastime, I bake cookie ornaments.
It’s what I do. It’s who I am. It’s what makes Christmas for me. I decorate them.
Children decorate them.
I love the orange slices, the twig stars, the popcorn garlands, all the homemade and handmade gifts.
But no matter how much I love all the rest of what rounds out Christmas, it’s all about the cookie ornaments for me. Sometimes readers ask me why I don’t make the kind of dough ornaments that last from year to year. I like to bake cookies for the tree every year. It puts me in the holiday spirit and it reminds me of what is important–to be in the moment, here, now, smell it, taste it, feel it. It’s simple, creative, nearly free, and made with my own hands. It puts my mind in the right place. I have to make the cookie ornaments new each year. It’s my ritual, my tradition, my intentional Christmas. It’s not my only way of marking the season, but it’s the one that somehow means the most to me, that seems to sum up all the rest in one.
It makes my Christmas. (After Christmas, the cookie ornaments serve as goat treats until they run out.)
What makes Christmas for you? And you can’t say family/loved ones/PEOPLE OF ANY KIND because we all know that comes first–I want to know what comes right after that? What do you do, have to do every year? What is your intentional Christmas?