Thursday, December 25, 2014

'Tis The Season..

I love traditions. Oh, let me put it correctly.. I love making my own traditions.
Never been a fan of the society created traditions anyway.

So this is the perfect time of the year to start - end - customize the traditions. It is Christmas after all.
I have always loved Christmas. It is always about something to look forward to in the cold winter months. I am not talking about the mall type Christmas commercialism with fancy lighting and greeting card quotes.

A couple of weeks back I talked about my Christmas excitement with a colleague and received a very sharp reaction from her. She found this enthusiasm absurd because it isn't our culture. Immediately, I listed out 10 other things that are practiced and are well integrated with our lives but are not a part of "our culture". The times are changing and in the times we live in we need more reasons to celebrate. We should be celebrating the world beyond our surroundings. I just find it ironical when people so conveniently draw lines for the others. It is quite easy to be judgmental without looking at your own life. I support it wholeheartedly.  We should celebrate cultures and whatever comes with that and there will be less bloodshed. That said, I have mocked the dying need of teenagers to attend "Halloween Parties" on various occasions. That was all in good spirit..

I kick started my traditions last month when I soaked the fruits and nuts in Brandy for the Christmas cake. Last night I baked 2 Christmas cakes, my first attempt was a super success. The cakes turned out really nice. I got a sweet compliment from my friends wife - "The best that I have had in a long while" and she is from B'lore.. It was a little boozy but deep, dark, rich and intense. Nothing gives me more satisfaction than sharing what I bake.. It is therapeutic and makes everything worthwhile.

I also baked chocolate cakes for work. I shared them with my project team. The reactions were pretty surprising too when they got to know that I had baked the cakes from scratch at home. People think that I am a brat. I can't tell the difference between boiling and blanching.. I am a black coffee drinker who eats her meals carefully and on a given day is more concerned about logging her miles than cooking. Yes, I have been stereotyped. I enjoy it when this bubble breaks and they learn the real truth. There is a twisted sadistic pleasure in it.
We also participated in Secret Santa and it was quite fun. Picking gifts for your co-workers is never easy but I think my gift was quite innovative. It was well appreciated.

At home there was good food and conversations to reminiscence the good times. There were no exaggerated decorations but lots of thoughtful gifts and conversations. Christmas isn't new to me.. The ways of celebrating it has changed over years. Some traditions were replaced with the new ones.. The others were well just put to rest.. From hanging socks to having family picnics. From riding around the town to see the decorations to drinking wine. From cooking elaborate meals to binging on the TV shows. From attending parties to baking Christmas cakes.. I have had quite a number of good Christmases and I am hungry for more..

There are lots of boozy cakes waiting to "mature".

Drinking strong brewed coffee at 10 PM and writing this blog post - Who knows this might become my Christmas thing.

Hope you had a good one.
Boozy Cakes: Brandy, Red Wine and Old Monk Rum. Ah, did I mention that I am off from Alcohol for a while? Rather I was..


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