‘Tis the season to give each other goodies (but I really wish we wouldn’t)

I know that some of you out there enjoy giving and receiving neighbor gifts at Christmas time. In fact, right now you’re putting the finishing touches on your homemade, hand-dipped chocolates or your caramel macadamia nut popcorn balls before deftly wrapping them in cellophane and gold French ribbon and delivering them to snow-covered homes all over the block. If you’re one of those people, you may want to skip this post. But if you’re like me, and the thought of having to come up with a cutsey neighborhood gift every year makes you want to stab your eyes out with your scalloped-edged scissors, then by all means, read on.

When I was young I loved helping my mother make fruitcakes for our neighbors at Christmas time. I greased the little loaf pans, added dried fruit and pecans to the bowl as my mother whisked the batter, the kitchen smelling of nutmeg and cinnamon and candied orange peel. Later I helped her deliver the fragrant loaves, freshly wrapped, to families up and down the street. Years later, as newlyweds my husband and I made five kinds of Christmas cookies one evening while we listened to Christmas music and kissed each other under the kitchen mistletoe, then delivered an entire platter of cookies to our surprised next-door neighbor.

Back then it was fun to be in the community of neighborhood gift givers. But then we started having children and Christmases became hectic.

Read the rest of this story at segullah.org/blog/
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