Christmas Traditions

Christmas sugar cookies from appalachia

Over the weekend the girls and I enjoyed one of our Christmas traditions-making sugar cookies. I remember Granny making sparkling sugar cookies when I was a child-hers were almost too pretty to eat. Sometime during my teenage years, Granny passed the ritual on to me.

Granny's Christmas Sugar Cookies

Chitter and Chatter started helping me with the tradition as soon as they were old enough. We still use Granny’s recipe-it’s just your typical sugar cookie recipe-the only special ingredient being grated orange peel.

Cookie Mess

Some years we try to make the cookies look like ones we’ve see in magazines- using different kinds of candy for decoration-most years we just stick to using colored sugar-but EVERY year we make a huge mess.

Flour Face

We usually start out super excited and end up just wanting it to be over. You can see near the end Chitter started eating out of the sugar bowls-she didn’t realize it was all over her face.

Sideburn girl

Chatter got bored using the cookie cutters so she started making her own cutout designs. Of all things-she created side burn cookies. That’s pretty much when I knew the cookie making was over for this year. Even though it makes a big mess and sometimes ends in hysteria-making Christmas sugar cookies is something I look forward to every year.

I hope you’ll share a Christmas tradition you have with me-leave a comment about it!


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  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    December 23, 2008 at 8:29 am

    I can’t think of anything better for a family than beautiful traditions like this. It is the “glue” that holds it all together!
    I love how much of your family you are willing to share with us!

  • Reply
    December 17, 2008 at 3:29 pm

    Looks like you had a wonderful time. When the kids were little we left out cookies and milk for Santa on Christmas Eve. No certain kind, usually whatever ‘Santa’ liked.

  • Reply
    December 17, 2008 at 10:02 am

    Looks like so much fun! Have great holi-days!

  • Reply
    December 17, 2008 at 6:15 am

    We had a date with the cookie dough, too. We did chocolate chip this time around, though. Her favorite. You have inspired me to do sugar cookies, though. They are so much fun.
    The mess is everything, I think–the being together and having fun.
    Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving such nice comments!

  • Reply
    Carolyn A.
    December 17, 2008 at 6:11 am

    Our Mom made the sugar cookies while she was still with us. She would then put them in a white pillow case and keep them in the back room (which was always cold). As children we couldn’t wait for the ‘bag’ to be brought up and opened so that we could eat the thin crisp cookies decorated with a tiny sprinkle of red or green sugar. We were also excited if we got the mix of red and green sugar on the same cookie.
    The back room was also where she would keep the Fanta soda pop … orange, grape and rootbeer. We’d each get a bottle when we got a cookie and we were so thrilled!
    My mother left us her sugar cookie recipe, along with her peanut butter cookie recipe. Two of my all time favorites. xxoo

  • Reply
    December 16, 2008 at 10:46 pm

    Oh what a great memory! I love Christmas cookies they are the best!

  • Reply
    December 16, 2008 at 7:57 pm

    Hi Tipper,
    My boys,including my husband, all love the sugar cookies too. But they all expect my peanutbutter balls, with choc.
    I hope to have time to post the recipe before Christmas.
    I really enjoyed the pictures of the girls cooking up a storm there.
    Have a great day.

  • Reply
    Rose Mary
    December 16, 2008 at 5:00 pm

    Looks like you all had a lot of fun!
    We always do a few batches of sugar cookies this time a year. Ours never look like the ones in the magazine, LOL!
    Antoher tradition we have is, that we always make a chocolate pie to eat sometime late Christmas Eve night before we go to bed. Probably not the best thing for a good nights rest!

  • Reply
    December 16, 2008 at 3:28 pm

    I get that same feeling of excitement when we start and then just wanting it to be over. Sideburn cookies are too funny, my kids have not thought of that, yet!

  • Reply
    December 16, 2008 at 1:57 pm

    Your cookies look delightful. One of our traditions is just retelling the history of the various inherited and special occasion ornaments as we put them on the tree.

  • Reply
    Amy @ parkcitygirl
    December 16, 2008 at 11:39 am

    I like Chatter’s new haircut 🙂 We love to bake together – I don’t do cut-out sugar cookies though – I don’t have the patience for them right now with all the little ones. My Grandma always makes a Happy Birthday cake for Jesus – I have continued the tradition with our family. It’s very special – and helps cement the true meaning of Christmas for the little ones.

  • Reply
    December 16, 2008 at 11:15 am

    Love enjoying your traditions and memories.
    I think my oldest daughter had a baby bed just like the one in one of the pics. In fact, I still have it.

  • Reply
    December 16, 2008 at 11:08 am

    I too have memories of making sugar cookies with Grandma and I made them with the boys every year when they were small. For some reason the last few years we haven’t made them.
    Love that Chitter and Chatter lend a hand but you were right. The cookie making was coming to the end when the sideburn cookies were being made. lol
    I just read the post below about your granny and it was awesome. We always cut trees for the entire family on Grandpa’s farm. We’d take the horse and sleigh and drive to the back 40. Each family would choose a tree, cut it down and it would be put on the sleigh. Ours was usually pine, Grandma liked a spruce.
    Thanks for the trip down Memory Lane. It’s wonderful to visit here and here all about your life and your ancestors.

  • Reply
    December 16, 2008 at 10:49 am

    Oh I just love the pictures of Chitter and Chatter, they are very gorgeous girls.
    It is frozen here, very cold and very clear, and very dry. Not a condition we get often, so the girls are going to ice skate on the big pond and I am going to make my grandmother’s divinity. I am sure the girls’ and my paths will cross and we will share a little of each others activity. Tomorrow is our big all out cookie day.

  • Reply
    December 16, 2008 at 8:43 am

    LOL! Side burns!!!!
    We always have a birthday cake for baby Jesus and the kids sing Happy Birthday and the blow out the candles.
    It’s a little something to remind them of the true meaning of Christmas…plus if my kids made cookies my kitchen would look like Hiroshima.

  • Reply
    December 15, 2008 at 11:46 pm

    there is something about baking up a big batch of sugar cookies and making a mess with the kids decorating them, that just has to happen during Christmas! My kids and I did it yesterday, big mitten and gingerbread boy shapes. We usually stick to the regular sugar and sprinkles for decorations. I made some cream cheese frosting with peppermint extract in it… yum! I could have just eaten that right out of the bowl… forget the cookie!

  • Reply
    December 15, 2008 at 9:40 pm

    Side burns? How funny!
    We made sugar cookies over the weekend too. We should have gotten together and done it all together!

  • Reply
    December 15, 2008 at 9:03 pm

    Well, you already know of one of my traditions. Peanut butter fudge.
    Boo and I make cookies and The Captain makes chocolate fudge.
    I always read The Night Before Christmas to Boo on Christmas eve.

  • Reply
    Valarie Lea
    December 15, 2008 at 7:33 pm

    Syd is just about to make some sugar cookies. I sure hope she cleans up her own mess. 🙂

  • Reply
    December 15, 2008 at 7:08 pm

    It just wouldn’t be Christmas at our house either without homemade sugar cookies. I always feel sorry for those folks who have only had the store bought dry as dust sugar cookies. They have no idea what they are missing!

  • Reply
    Fishing Guy
    December 15, 2008 at 6:37 pm

    Tipper: How neat, that is somethig we do the day before Christmas and you should see the decorations. The Grandkids made cookies with Nana and we all made hard tack candy. That is a real job.

  • Reply
    petra michelle
    December 15, 2008 at 3:23 pm

    Hi Tipper! *laughing* Love the pics. They bring back so many fond memories of when the entire family was together to celebrate!
    And I think I’ve gained another pound! :)) One of our endless Christmas traditions is to make poppy seed or plum cake. And whatever else strikes our appetite at the moment! What a wonderful time of year! The best! Blessings, Tipper!

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