07 January 2010
What's to be done on a December night in NY...
...when it's doing THIS outside...
...and THIS is accumulating at an alarming rate??
Well the first thing is to go outside and run and jump around. Make snowballs (but not snow angels b/c you are wearing your last pair of clean jeans and your sister is far too slim and trim to be lending you anything but a hat.) Take lots of pictures...
...and make the effort to at least appear as though you are helping your brother-in-law clear a path.
Then get back inside here...
...where the Christmas tunes are cheery, the borrowed slippers are snuggly, the tree is festive, the wine is full bodied (like you, not your sister) and...
...there's baking to be done!!!
(And dogs to be cuddled)
Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to Maryanne's Cookie Sweatshop. My very ambitious, generous and Betty Crocker-ific sister decided to make Christmas cookies for, oh, EVERYONE she knows. About eight varieties of cookie, dozens of batches each - holy Martha Stewart - that's A LOT of dough.
The poor, sweet girl thought she was going to be doing all of this on her own!! My job (according to her) was to drink wine, keep her company and occasionally taste some cookie dough. Though she had already done an awful lot of the labor and pre-prepared several batches of dough, it's a good thing her husband and I were there to lend a hand. Because making four thousand cookies is a lot of work.
I was a good little cookie elf and I mixed and melted and sprinkled as needed. We were churning out these bad boys at an astonishing rate. We rolled little one inch balls of cookie dough, we chopped nuts with surgical precision, we shaped cookies through a hand cranked press, we shuffled cookie sheets in and out of the oven, we juggled cooling racks and spatulas, we drizzled white chocolate with operatic flair. I tell you people, it was a site to behold.
It might not sound like much, but I was as happy as a clam (and I think we all know how happy clams are.) I was less than halfway through my NY trip, I had already spent time with some of my favorite people, with plans for more of the same. I was cozy, and comfortable (as I always am Chez Maryanne). We klotched over coffee, caught up with eachother and shared more than a few laughs. Spending time with my Mrynn always leaves my spirit refreshed and renewed.
And all on a snowy night in New York. It was wonderful. (And so were the cookies) So how do you follow up on such a perfect wintry evening?
Wake up and start baking more cookies with sister Laura!!
*A footnote on the name. I don't recall how it came about, but some clever sibling realized if you remove all the vowels from Maryanne's name you get Mrynn and it stuck. Infinitely nick-nameable, Maryanne will also answer to Mr. Ynn, Sunshine, Sorryanne, Mrynny-Herny, Scaryanne, Scurryanne and Sparerib. I can't promise she likes them all, but you will get her attention, and she might just make you a nice cuppa tea.
**Thanks Mrynn for always making me feel so wanted and welcome. I love you.