Adventures in Christmas Decorating

This is my first gluten-free Christmas!  Last night my mom and I attempted to make our family’s classic whipped melt-in-your-mouth shortbread cookies gluten-free.  We decided to make it with no substitutions except for using my favourite gluten-free all-purpose flour blend instead of regular all-purpose flour.

The batter behaved like normal, and the cookies looked good when they came out of the oven (though it only took 8 minutes to bake instead of the usual 12), so it was very promising:

But when we tried to pick one up, it completely disintegrated:

After we let them sit on the baking sheets for about 20 minutes, we were able to pick them up whole.  They taste exactly the same as the usual cookies, and they still melt in your mouth, but the texture is different.  My mom and I both thought they were totally edible, but my brother said “it feels like I’m chewing sand.”

I’ll wait until I can upgrade them from “edible” to “holy crap these are good” before I post the recipe.

Today, we picked up our Christmas tree.  I wanted to share a few of my favourite Christmas ornaments.


The pregnant reindeer & one-legged dancing pig.


A picture of my brothers face & the thing that’s way too huge to be hung on the tree but we put it there anyway because it’s hilarious (this thing is >1 foot tall).

This is what we call “the sledding accident”.

That one’s my favourite.  My brother made this when he was a kid and I always hang it prominently at the front.  LOOK AT ITS FACE.

Every year my brother and I chuck handfuls of these at the tree and whoever gets the most to actually stay on the tree wins.  (My mom used to declare that this game was “ruining Christmas”, but she has come to embrace it.)

This Santa & Mrs. Claus are probably older than me.  I set up a pretty good tableau this year:

Along with a few other decorations:


(My parents really like Inuit art.)

My family’s Christmas traditions are pretty awesome.  Christmas Eve is Christmas Eve Tacos at my aunt’s house.  I have Christmas morning at my mom’s house, drinking mimosas and opening presents, and then we have a huge breakfast.  Christmas Day is spent with my dad’s family, where we have a big Secret Santa game and then we play Yankee Swap and scream at each other.

I’m getting pretty excited!


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