In this post I share with you my favorite Christmas tradition. The annual Christmas cookie baking! It all started one cold December afternoon when my Mom spontaneously decided to bake some cookies. Although it has been many years since this first cookie bake, my love for this tradition has remained constant along with the smiles I receive when I hand out these plates. It is a pleasure to tell the story of how it all began!
Candy Canes and Italian Biscuits… Oh My!
Christmas is a mere two weeks away and this for me means the beginning of my Christmas baking! For years I have been baking a specific array of cookies (many of them Italian) and gifting them to family and friends. I cherish every moment of this process from the first ingredient I buy to the last plate I deliver. This tradition has given me a deeper connection to loved ones past and paved a path to visit friends whom I only get to see once a year. Today, I want to share with you how this tradition began on one clear, crisp day in my childhood a week shy of Christmas.
When I was nine, my siblings and I had two full weeks off from school for Christmas and my Mom decided to take full advantage of the time. On our first day off I recall her pulling out her recipe book and saying casually “I want to do some baking.” Little did I know that I was on the cusp of a tradition that would shape me forever. That week we baked several cookies ranging from cut outs, cream cheese drop cookies, wine biscuits, and so much more. Once the final batch was baked, the plate assembly proceeded and was followed by deliveries to the neighbors. I will never forget one neighbor saying to my Mom “Linda, how did you do all this?” My Mom responded “These kids have been amazing.” I felt this rush of joy for making my Mom so happy. When I was sixteen, I was handed the baton and given the lead on this tradition which I cherish so deeply. This will be the 28th year that I am baking and delivering these cookies. I crave the smells of the extracts and spices and love the sight of the smiles I receive when I hand people their plates. One day a time will come where I too will hand over this baton to the next generation because this tradition is too precious not to be shared with others.
Eddie, Lucy, and I at the New York Palace Christmas Tree
My gift to you is my biscotti recipe. It is a part of my cookie selection and is a beloved favorite in my family. I wish all of you a most magical and wonderful Christmas and have chosen my favorite lyrics from “The Christmas Song” as these words capture what I am trying to say and more.
“And so I’m offering this simple phrase from kids from one to ninety two. Although it’s been said many times, many ways Merry Christmas to you.”
Kristina Lucia xoxo