My sister, Mary Ann, recently was in a conversation with some of these same ladies regarding a recipe of Mother's. It is for Christmas Bread. Mother found the recipe in 1965 in a Better Homes and Gardens Magazine. She made it for the first time that year and made it every Christmas after that - until I began making it when I was married and living on my own. She retired from making it sometime after that I suppose. She used to make it and give it away as gifts to friends. It's a delicious bread and it was a part of our Christmas morning breakfast from 1965 to 2005. 2006 was the first year I didn't make it. I was just too tired that year and too distracted and kept putting it off and it didn't get made. Ironically, and I didn't intend this, it was the first Christmas Mother wasn't with us. She had died in April of 2006.
So - as a thank you to many of these dear ladies who are so much a part of my past and who were so kind to my Sarah - I have come down here to make this bread - today - and tomorrow Mary Ann and I are having them over for Coffee, Bread, Brown Sugar Crusted Bacon (delicious recipe), and a little "Old Fashioned Fruitcake". I love fruitcake and this that I make - well, Mother once told me it tasted like the kind her grandmother used to make. My cousin Susan told me it tasted like the kind her grandmother used to make. I took those as the best compliments, as if I had been awarded a special recognition of some sort.
What I've been doing all day. I made the recipe 3 times.
One recipe makes two wreaths or four loaves.
I made 2 wreaths and 8 loaves. After the coffee they each get to
go home with some Christmas Bread.
Mary Ann and I had to run out this evening for a few more items
at their grocery store, Food Giant.
When we returned her house smelled like a bakery.
Mary Ann's Kitchen where I've been most of the day.
I have four more loaves in the oven,
then I'll decorate them
and I'll be done.
Now we can have the party tomorrow.