Today had been marked on my calendar for weeks. "Holiday Baking." It's tradition I'd grow up with and then that Ken and I shared during our life together. But this year, I decided not to make any of our classic treats. It needed to be a whole new menu to expedient with. I'd also decided a while ago that the benefactors of my holiday treats would be the wonderful staff at the Creticos Cancer Center, where Ken was so lovingly tended to. I'd learned from my Zen cooking master how relaxing and focusing cooking/baking can be. And it lived up to its promise. I hummed Christmas carols and did my best in my pursuit of the elusive holiday spirit.
I've experienced brief flashes of it, though. Today while driving home from errands first thing, my mind drifted away from trying to inject me with the Santa Serum, and in a brief moment of not really thinking about it--and no doubt looking forward to baking and delivering my goodies, I felt it. For a split second. It was almost like being tickled suddenly. Then it was gone. That's about the fourth time it's happened. I guess thems the breaks when you are practically dry humping Christmas, molesting it to make it feel the way it used to.
While in the middle of holiday baking, I got an unexplained desperate craving for deviled eggs. I'd never made them before, and only had them rarely at get-togethers. But still I wanted them. And I all the fixings for them. After a quick clean up, I switched gears and prepped my eggs, excitedly getting out a piping back and tip to use to fill the eggs. They were tasty and I devoured each and every one of them. Then went back to baking.
The fruits of my labor:
I couldn't help but think of Ken and his pride in my new-found kitchen affection, and it makes me happy to know I'm going to deliver the bulk of it to a group of people who were instrumental in taking such great care of him. I'd like to think of it as a way of honoring him, and spreading some Christmas spirit even if I'm not finding it myself.
I won't stop trying to capture the spirit of the holiday, but even if it doesn't happen, it doesn't change my excitement about seeing my family, and beginning to look forward to 2012.