I’ve been thinking about Christmas. I can’t help myself, I am SO excited about it this year! And yes, I realize that Thanksgiving comes first, and I really don’t want to shortchange that wonderful day, but this year I cannot possibly be more excited for Christmas.

We’ll be flying home to Michigan for the holidays this year; I haven’t been home since I moved to Portland two and a half years ago, so I think that accounts for most of my excitement. A big brick house in small-town snowy Michigan makes for the classic Christmas. All the elements come together: the fireplace, my favorite hot chocolate, a slippery night-time walk lit by streelamps, cutting holly branches for decorations…add a family reunion, two small children, a christmas tree and stockings and it’s just perfect.

I’m making several Christmas presents this year, and I’m so glad I’ve started this early because I already feel overwhelmed. I can’t write about what I’m making because the recipients might be reading this blog, but it’s gonna be good. I have some smaller things I’d like to do, too. Gift tags seem so easy to make, especially with a paper bag and some stamps, so that might have to happen. And I am in love with these labels from Angry Chicken–they are just perfect. And those little bottles! Beautiful. I really need to label the canned goodies we made earlier, and get a few ready for last-minute gifts. I love being able to grab a can of Pear Butter or Peach Rum Sauce as a quick “happy birthday,” or “happy house” present, but I do need to pretty them up a bit. Or at the very least make sure they all have labels. Really thoughtful, I know.
The picture above is of Sugared Cranberries, which can apply to Thanksgiving or Christmas, really. My dear friend tipped me off on how amazing these are last year. The recipe has already been emailed around the office so I feel good in knowing that I’ve done my part to spread the yummy news. A little early holiday cheer. 
Don’t worry, Thanksgiving, I’m excited about you as well.