Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Gifts From the Kitchen #2 - Gifts

Normally, I would start this post with a group picture of the guests attending the Gifts From the Kitchen Christmas Brunch but we forgot to take a group picture this year. For those not familiar with the brunch tradition - it is a gathering I have had each year for twenty-two years (I think). We started with ten women and the same women are invited each year. Due to a few moving away I have needed to add different people but over half of us are from the original group. Each is asked to bring an especially chosen container, all alike, one for each of the other women. They are to be filled with something (food) from their kitchen. Over the years we have had quite a variety of containers and food. But, cookies have probably been the selection of choice more than anything else.
After we enjoy eating together we take turns giving a little presentation of our container and what is inside. Before I moved to this small house we always placed everything together on, under, and around a table. It was a lot of stuff with ten participating it would be 90 pieces. Now, not having room to spread them all out, they keep them concealed in their baskets, boxes or whatever they carry them here in until after we eat and then comes the big reveal!

So, this is Sarah, an original, and this year she picked a pretty box to contain her poppy-seed loaf. We now have eight people so each brought seven gifts.   

Sarah had her box tied up with a sparkling trim and attached a beautiful silver dragonfly.

Next up is Deborah who also chose a box as her container but not finding enough alike she brought seven different ones. She had different Christmas pancake turners attached to each one. Inside, was some great tasting cookies. This is the first time, in all the years, that we sat to give our presentations. I think we are getting tired!
I love this one that I claimed because it was my favorite.
Cathy came next and presented her beautifully packaged mini-loaves of sweet breads. The beautiful, silver snowflake ornament was her gift. 

Very pretty.
Next up, Lynda who has a difficult time stopping with one container and food item. This year she gave us a pretty seasonal mug with some hot chocolate mix. Also, a little silver bowl which holds her ginger cookies and she sneaked in a tiny white squirrel.
The little squirrel had already found his place in Charlie Brown's tree before I took pictures.
This is me presenting my daughter-in-law's gift because she was working and was not able to attend.
Her cute "container". We're stretching it here, as the food gift is in the striped bag and is tied on.  Mary-Rose made biscotti. She is part Italian and knows how to do a good biscotti. 

My daughter, Carrie, went all out with chocolate candy making! She is holding a sampling of the shaped chocolates so everyone could see what is in the box inside the big red lantern.

A good look at the well done and tasty chocolates.
A lot of us have a story to tell, either about our container search, our experience trying to get our food ready or something! Joyce entertains us for fifteen or twenty minutes with her stories!! She is holding the heart-shaped glass container with her cookies and also an apple for each one to take home, slice up and use to soften up the too-hard cookies! She is another one that gives extras some of which you  see lying beside her.

And me again, this time showing my selection for this year.  I like jars and I have been really "into" making snow scene jars the last two years. When I found this jar, I liked it at first sight and as things progressed it became a snow scene with 10x sugar for snow and my chocolate crinkle cookies.
I got a little extra silver trim to dress up the jar, poured the sugar in and placed the cookies on top. I thought about putting a word on the "chalkboard" but, decided to leave that for each of them to do with the piece of chalk that came with the jar. I won't even go into the time I had getting three batches of cookies to be right!!! 
If you missed seeing #1 where I show the brunch table, etc. you can click here to see that.


  1. What a fun tradition! Food, story-telling, long-time friendships... all good stuff! Have a wonderful holiday season, Aunt Betty!

    1. Thanks, Joanne, for taking time out of this busy season to leave a comment. I wish you were close enough to participate in the brunch.

    2. So do I :-) Maybe I will just have to start my own "Gifts" brunch!


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