Collage by kayti sweetland rasmussen

Attics are wonderful places. They hold all the left-over stuff of our lives, unless one is also fortunate in having a cellar, in which case you get to collect more stuff.

As soon as the Thanksgiving turkey was in the soup pot Dr. Advice led the foray into our attic to gather wreaths, bows, ribbons, ornaments and lights to brighten the season. While visiting a nice gift store in our area, the owner, who lives nearby, was pleased to see the wreaths in place, and the candy canes lining our walkway. Green boughs and red bows enliven all the doorways and windows inside, contribution of the good Dr. a true decorating demon. It took me a little longer to trim the small tree indoors. It’s always fun to unwrap each ornament and remember where you got it and how long ago. Some pieces become the worse for wear through the years, and though each year you threaten to toss those out, you never do. Memories are too precious.

A couple of years ago we were guests of friends in Seattle at Christmastime. A magnificent tree stood in the corner of the living room and was covered with beautiful and expensive ornaments. It was a work of art, much like visiting a fine store or museum. Our little tree waits patiently each year to hold its small offerings and remind us of where each piece came from and which child may have made it.

For our first Christmas while living in the Northwest, Dr. Advice brought home a 14 foot tree which we placed in the barn on our little farm which we used as our recreation room, where it stood tall and proud and held a number of life-sized elves made of papier mache. Alongside an antique pot bellied stove which brought cozy warmth to the space, it was a taste of an old fashioned Christmas for our California city relatives.

I think our animals must think we are crazy bringing trees into the house. We have had dogs who drank out of the water containers the trees were standing in, and cats who sat quietly at our feet eating the popcorn we used to string to drape around the tree, until when we thought we had strung enough, we lifted the string only to find it empty. We are never ending mysteries to our furry friends as they are to us.

My Merry Christmas gift to you is my friend Betty’s Persimmon Pudding. Don’t turn your noses up and think you won’t like it—it is NOT a steamed pudding which I wouldn’t like either. It’s more like a nut bread. I get to make this every year courtesy of my friend Judy who brings me persimmons. I made 20 loaves this year to give to friends and neighbors. Now it’s time to begin the cookie baking! GLAEDELIG JUL!

1 Tbs. melted butter
1 cup persimmon pulp (I use the hard Fuyu and put them through the processor.)
1 cup flour
2 tsp. soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup milk
1 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup golden raisins

Mix dry ingredients in bowl, add nuts and raisins and toss about
Add persimmon, and milk and mix well.
Add butter last.

325 for 40-45 min. in buttered loaf pan. ENJOY

Author: kaytisweetlandrasmussen83

I am a retired fine arts teacher, sculptor/painter, writer, and a native Californian. I love my family,dogs, horses, movies, reading and music, probably in that order. I have been married forever to a very nice man who is nice to old ladies, dogs and children.

17 thoughts on “JINGLE ALL THE WAY”

  1. With the temperature last night dropping to 11c and in almost midsummer I now feel we could be in for a white Christmas. Unbelievable in Sub-tropic Australia.

    Steamed pudding is an all encompassing fashionable Christmas food here, almost an institute.We are not fond of it either (we are europeans, thank you) but will eat politely if offered. Great story and collage Kayti.


  2. Our trees were always decorated with the same ornaments; but they were of an age, and I don’t think anyone remembered their origins. That was when we were four little girls aged between, say, 3 and 10 … Back then, it was a wonderful time.
    No more. I can’t stand what it’s become. And anyway, it’s for familes.
    I hope you have a lovely time, Katy – you and Dr Advice. And your friends !


    1. Four little girls must have been quite a joy to watch back then. I don’t like the commercialism now. It begins too early and doesn’t let up for a month or two. But somehow every year the cookies and the music get to me and even if “Grandma Gets Run Over
      By a Reindeer”, it’s still the same old Christmas in many ways.

      Love your new blog BTW.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. A very nice thing to say !! – especially in light of the fact that it’s simply an egotistical rave, now … just one without a reason !


  3. I do envy you for having your decorations in place already. I am apprehensive about setting up the tree because our cat Wolfgang (Wolfie), now 8 months old, is a bit of a holy terror. I do not think he will quietly eat popcorn. I think he will leap straight up into the air and come down in a tumble of broken ornaments and Christmas tree lights. The whole family is coming here for Christmas dinner, so the only way is forward. . .


    1. I laughed out loud when I thought of Woilfie leaping into the tree! He wouldn’t be the first I imagine. How wonderful that your family are coming as are ours, but ours come for dinner on the 22nd, and then off they go on the 23rd! I found a cute pillow which says that no family reunion is complete with a meltdown! Not that it applied in our family, but I know it does in some.

      Today is the beginning of cookie baking. I always begin with my cousin’s butter ball recipe. It’s an annual test to see how many I bake and which kind.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, we are very lucky, as the children and grandchildren all live nearby. We see each other often and, although there are tensions sometimes, they don’t build up.

        Good for you, Kayti. I’ll bet those cookies are wonderful.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh, your post is lovely. I’m sending the recipe in about five minutes to a friend who has a huge persimmon tree in her yard, and who has been wondering what to do with all those things.

    And I’m completely with you, re: the joys of ornaments which carry history and memory, instead of pricey tags. “I’m Dreaming of a Fashionable Christmas” just doesn’t do it for me. I have known people who would say things like, “Let’s do a mauve and pink tree this year,” but I don’t see them much any more.

    I love Christmas, unabashedly. Rather than gripe about the consumerism and all the hoopla that makes it so irritating, I just withdraw from all that. Since I don’t go to malls, don’t risk big box stores, don’t watch television and don’t listen to commercial radio, I’m pretty much free of having to listen to bad music and high-pressure pitches.

    Just today, I got all The Christmas Stuff out of the closet. I’d have the decorating done by now, except I took a notion the rearrange the closet while I was at it. At least the closet’s organized. Maybe I should hang a wreath on it and call it good.


    1. I hope your friend is planning to share her bounty with you!

      Right now I’m getting in gear for the nnual family celebration. Planning the food, and table decorations. I agree that the flashy, sophisticated decor is not me, not now. I did laugh however thinking about the mauve Christmas trees. When I had the business, Christmas was very big with dressing lots of commercial trees. I did many outrageous ones depending upon where it would stand. I do remember a pink one on a black tree. It was in a posh jewelry store and caught a lot of comments.

      Good on you to get your closet organized I did the same thing while getting table linen out. Found a year’s worth of napkins which needed ironing, and got them all done. Doesn’t it give you a boost?


    2. I completely agree! One can have the true meaning of Christmas, whatever that might be to one, without any of the commercialism. I love the giving of gifts, the sharing of food, the parties and the family time. I love the skinny tree and those old decorations that are the same every year, a trip down memory lane.


  5. Katyi I’m tempted to try this recipe but I have no idea what a persimmon is, and couldn’t get one if I knew in any case. I wonder if I could use cranberries instead? What would you suggest as a substitute? I am thinking something sort of tart, and bursting with flavour? Happy holidays to you and Dr A, (who sounds like a pretty cool guy).


    1. Boy, I’m late getting off the mark. sorry about that,. I don’t know a substitute persimmon. It is tart, and solid like an apple. I puree them, but apples would not give the tartness. Maybe a Google search?

      Happy New Year to you and your Martin, who also sounds like a cool guy!


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