- BY JILL COOPER
You know the
old song "Christmas Eve will find me... where the love light
glows- I'll be home for Christmas...." Well, Christmas Eve
will find me lounging on the couch, watching snow flakes falling
gently while sipping my old fashioned cocoa (made with real milk
heated on the stove). I admire the lovely tree piled high with
gifts and my joyful heart swells at how blessed I am.
think I'm some sort of paragon of a woman, let me explain. I'm
on the couch only because that is where I collapsed in exhaustion.
As for the cocoa, I'm trying not to notice the burnt taste it
acquired when it boiled over making a sticky, gooey mess on the
stove. Then there's the snow after spending 30 minutes digging
the car out so I could hurry into town and buy the packages,
I had to use all my snow scene Christmas cards to light the fireplace.
Last, but especially
not least there's the tree! Whoever started the wives tale that
decorating a tree is a heart warming and joyous occasion could
not possibly have ever decorated one. The madness begins when
you decide to cut down your own tree. After hiking a mile through
knee deep snow you find the perfect tree only to realize that
you left the axe in the car. Freezing and frustrated, you hike
back only to discover that your 4 wheel drive is snowed under
and the tow truck bill alone could have bought a tree for every
room of your home! You wedge it into the tree stand...forget
trying to make it straight! You're just excited that it stays
in the stand without falling over. It's amazing what you can
do with baling wire and duct tape.
- You string
your own popcorn (another story in itself) and hang gingerbread
men only to find later that the tree is laying prostrate on the
floor stripped naked and at the mercy of the dog who grins at
you, revealing his mouth full of severed gingerbread limbs.
- Now you know
why my heart swells with pride looking at my tree: Because it
took more work to build it than the Empire State building!
If Christmas Tradition runs you over like Santa's freight train,
this recipe from Not Just Beans might just be your miracle on
34th street. For more recipes and ideas visit www.notjustbeans.com.
- 1 cup butter
- 6 Tbsp. sugar
- 2 cups flour
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 cup nuts
- powdered sugar
and sugar together. Add flour, vanilla and nuts. Roll into walnut
sized balls onto a greased cookie sheet and lightly flatten.
Bake at 400 for 10 minutes. Remove from oven, place on waxed
paper and sprinkle with or roll in powdered sugar.
is the inspiration behind her daughter Tawra's frugal cookbook
Not Just Beans: 50 Years of Frugal Family Favorites. Not Just
Beans is a frugal cookbook which has over 540 recipes and 400
tips. For more tips and recipes visit our website at www.notjustbeans.com.
To order Not
Just Beans, send $14.95 to Not Just Beans, P.O. Box 131, Manhattan,
KS 66505-0131 or visit Amazon.com.
- Not Just Beans
- by Tawra Jean
Kellam, David G. Cooper (Illustrator)