December 19, 2013


The Christmas Party


You can feel it. The minute the door opens and the balsam scent beckons you to come inside and warm up by the fireside. It feels inviting and welcoming. The lights of the tree illuminate the room. I like the fact that the ornaments are rustic and many are homemade. That's a sure sign of a good homemaker. Someone who cares deeply about their home, their family and their traditions.

The hostess offers you a cup of that decadent homemade eggnog. You know, that southern tradition of heavy nog made with real cream and lots and lots of good bourbon! Fresh nutmeg to boot. This is always served in crystal cups or in sterling silver mugs. You have to be careful with this.....it goes down very smoothly and you can feel the warmth all the way to your heart.....it's enough boozy booze to make you feel relaxed and bring a rosy glow to your face. You think, "easy girl"....the night is young.

That darling southern gentleman sitting in the corner is the patriarch of the family! He's going to entertain us later in the evening. I love the fact that his Christmas sweater is monogrammed and he smells like a dream. This is just how a lovely Christmas party should be. It's being introduced to us slowly.....their traditions...they hang on to them tightly. I just know I am going to be lost in his lovely accent.....it's unmistakable......we know which side of the Mason-Dixon line he was born and bred.

And then I am engaged in conversation with a guest.....he is telling some long tale that HE thinks is comical...HE thinks he is being funny.....HE thinks he is a comedian. I then hear his words...."I DON'T LIKE CATS.....BUT,".......that's all it took! Just one look........

"Where's that eggnog.......where's that good bourbon?" Honey! There is not one person in this world worth talking to that does not like cats......just ain't fittin'! Enough said! Well, now wait a minute. There is something to be said. There is something very wrong with this. "I think his momma left him in the crib too long!"

 All in all, it was grand party. I loved the atmosphere of peace on earth. I loved the food....baked ham, homemade rolls, vegetable casseroles laden with processed cheese, an array of gelatin salads and oh my, the champagne was plentiful. There was music from Bing Crosby, Perry Como, Rosemary Clooney and Andy Williams. The women wore red  or the infamous little black dress with strands of pearls. Glittering bracelets adorned every left wrist of every woman. The men wore tweed jackets over their finest sweaters. Some got silly and kissed under the mistletoe. Yes, it was a fine party. It always feels good to head for home and ease into your own bed with dreams of Santa and Christmases past. Did I ever mention how much I love the South?

As for the "guy who does not like cats".........
he learned what it means when a southern girl ends her hissy fit with
 "Bless Your Heart!"
Time for the good stuff!

20 Oreo cookies, divided
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup peanut butter
1-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar, divided
1 carton (16 ounces) frozen whipped topping, thawed, divided
15-20 miniature peanut butter cups, chopped
1 cup cold milk
1 package instant chocolate pudding


Crush 16 cookies; toss with the butter. Press into an ungreased 9-inch square dish; set aside. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, peanut butter and 1 cup confectioners’ sugar until smooth. Fold in half of the whipped topping. Spread over crust. Sprinkle with chopped peanut butter cups. In another large bowl, beat the milk, pudding mix and remaining

confectioners’ sugar on low speed for 2 minutes Let stand for 2 minutes or until soft-set. Fold in remaining whipped topping. Spread over peanut butter cups. Crush remaining cookies; sprinkle over the top. Cover and chill for at least 3 hours.


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