In the Spirit

It’s hard to be otherwise around here, despite breath-taking cold with some ice tossed in. In the middle of a busy, scattered week, we took a little time off for fun, and a new tradition.

BW and I invited the employees of our Boonsboro businesses to a little progressive holiday shopping. It’s a good, happy way to gather other busy people together, make connections, and let everyone see what the other businesses have to offer.

Just add wine and camaraderie.

The crowd at Turn the Page.

From Turn The Page to Gifts Inn Boonsboro, from Gifts to Fit In Boonsboro, and from Fit to the inn. It’s a nice way to give managers and staff a chance to show off their own and socialize.

The Gifts Inn BoonsBoro display.
The Fit In Boonsboro staff.

We ended the evening hosting a dinner for all at Vesta. And boy, did Vesta show off its own.

The Inn, dressed for the season.
The Courtyard at Inn BoonsBoro.

Good times, good people, and an excellent new tradition.

Saturday was for long-standing traditions. Cookie baking at Christmas has been part of our holiday festivities since my boys were just little guys. I have memories of them at every stage from pre-schoolers to teenagers.


We continued on with grandchildren. A big part of my enjoyment this time around was watching Kayla and Logan instruct Colt as I had instructed them. How to measure and stir, how to break an egg. (Nana picks out shells when necessary.)


It’s a full, fun-filled, messy day with happy, calorie-loaded results. Chocolate chip, snickerdoodles, mint blossoms, peanut-butter blossoms, and the traditional finale of painted sugar cookies.

With, naturally, much tasting included.

I see how cooking with Kayla has paid off as she competently puts the snickerdoodle dough together while I clean up behind–and deal with the ovens that have chosen today to go wonky. Just won’t hold the temperature.

Everyone paints the cookies.

Appliance repair, stat! I have a lot of cooking to do the following week.

We cap this tradition off with another–the early Christmas present. One gift, chosen pretty much at random for each kid to help them hold off for the endless week before the big day. Colt gets Legos, Logan a Risk game, Kayla some sweatpants.

And with that along with a big bag of cookies to take home.

And just about that time BW gets a call. Water is pouring out of the door of his studio in town. Uh-oh. Off he goes, so I push up my sleeves and deal with the mess, which is usually his job. Obviously he’s dealing with another mess which could be a lot more trouble than washing dishes and cleaning off counters spotted with cookie paint and sprinkles.

Plus I have time to catch my breath and have a glass of wine before he gets back. Sprinkler system busted, rained down. Water now shut off, mess dealt with and yet another repair coming.

Breath caught, it’s time to clean myself up, do a little prep for another tradition. My girl managers holiday party. A cheerful gathering of smart women’s a fine way to spend an evening. Some wine, some pretty food–and lots of home-made cookies along with easy conversation and plenty of laughs.

Today, after I write this, it’s time to workout. Maybe add a little extra cardio considering cookies. Then BW is off to a football game with Jason and pals.

I intend to do a whole bunch of absolutely nothing. A nothing-filled alone day to recharge the batteries for the rush and spirit of this last week before Christmas.

I wouldn’t mind making that another tradition.


17 thoughts on “In the Spirit”

  1. Just love seeing all the holiday activities going on in Boonsboro..wish I lived a little closer, but so glad I made one visit there to be able to visualize all the great little shops in the area. The Inn looks just amazing…what a place. It is great seeing your grandkids making cookies for the holidays…such a great tradition. Thanks so much for sharing with us.
    Merry Christmas to All…???

  2. Thanks for sharing your holiday baking memories. I have a question about the mint blossoms. I have a recipe for Brown-eyed Susans that has a mint wafer pressed in the center before baking. Do we have the same recipe, just a different name? If so what kind of mints do you use. The company that makes the mint wafers I used to use went out of business years ago, but my grown kids still remember and would like these cookies.

  3. While you were baking cookies with Grandchildren (so great you carry on that tradition…making memories with the kiddos), a group of 8 friends were enjoying your Inn and celebrating our 30+ years of friendship. We all met working maternity at FMH and remain friends…we may make this a tradition now that all our children are grown, and before all the Christmas week madness (love it!) with our families! <3 Merry Christmas!

  4. Thank you for sharing your days and weekends!

  5. I wondered if Nora would be so kind as to share the wisdom she had at some point in her life of the importance to exercise as she seems to do it everyday. What motivated her make this a part of her life and how does she keep this motivation going?

    1. Of course I don’t the answer to that, but I can say that I had blown off any form of working out for about a year- thanks to Nora and Kat I decided to try again and if you are looking for DVD incentive – go to the Italy trip log. They have a great list of their favs. I’m a huge fan of Pilates and yoga now. Shaun T? Love him but I’m still not advanced enough to do anything other than hip hop abs. Or just watch lol.

  6. Merry Christmas to you and your families, Nora and Laura. Thank you for sharing a part of your life with us. It’s wonderful to see your grandchildren growing into their own persons.

  7. A very happy holiday to you and yours, as well! Was so pleased to see the picture of your managers. All ages, shapes and sizes – and you value them all.

  8. Merry Christmas Nora and Laura! Thank you for sharing your family, your town, your traditions. Wishing you and yours the best for 2017.

  9. So sorry to hear about the things that went wrong, an oven at baking time is not supposed to break down but that is the way of it. I too have the been baking, three loaves of banana nut bread and four loaves of bishops bread, a old time version of a sorta fruit cake sans the citron which I do not like but with cherries or cranberries, nuts and chocolate, yes chocolate. But of course while mixing up a triple batch of dough I bent the beaters and stripped the gears on my decades old formerly dependable hand mixer. Argh, had to get out the MixMaster the hubby gave to me a couple decades ago. I only used it twice, it was just too big to leave out. Well, guess what, its now out. Enjoy that workout knowing you are doing something to counteract all those cookies.

    Hope nothing too valuable was ruined in the sprinkler debacle for BW, ugh.

  10. Lovely way to spend the holidays, there is nothing quite so special than to keep traditions alive with your grandchildren. It brings back so many memories, joy and peace. Thanks ?

  11. Thanks for taking the time to post this. It’s lovely how you include everyone in your celebrations
    I don’t believe for a minute, that you can spend a day doing nothing. I think you model ed Eve’s work ethic after yours. You probably exercised and spent the day cleaning up.
    THANKS A MILLION, for the gifts of reading that you have given us. Have a very happy holiday season.

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