For the past 9 years the sister and brother duo Salli and Nate, have run They Draw and Cook (and Travel and Garden). I've followed them for years with their largest collection of illustrated recipes website. (They use a very loose interpretation of "recipe") So many delightful images. I decided it was time I tried my paint brush at it. And the challenge theme this time around - "Favorite Food Memories" - was a draw. So this is the entry I sent in . Below is the longer version of my "recipe."
A merry night doesn’t start out as a tradition. It evolves over time. Slowly. Taking on a life of its own. That’s the way our Christmas Houses started with our first child, Leila. It continued with the seven other children that followed. Candy, frosting and cookie all wrapped up into colorful little houses.
It’s changed as our families have grown - houses have added sugar cookie people, at times frosting is replaced by hot glue, and corner-cut baggies can be quicker than pastry bags with tips. But always there’s the handfuls of candy. And the aftermath of mess.
And it doesn’t matter if we’re in Missouri, Amman or Stockholm. It’s not even the where, the what or even the how. It’s the inherited birthright of happiness, the heritage of harmony.
I didn’t know back then how important our Christmas tradition would be now. Now that I can tell Joseph that his Angel Mama Leila loved making the houses as much as he does. Something to connect him to the mother he never knew. And the joy he has for months in advance as he talks and waits to decorate. The tradition reminds me that it’s never been about the houses. It’s about the laughter. Love. Fun. And memories.
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