I have not been a fan of Christmas time for many years. However, I feel like now that I have a little lady in my life (Edith) I am growing to appreciate the season a bit more…and Christmas in Omaha is really lovely. There are lights and decorations throughout the city, Christmas tree stands in random parking lots, and there is usually snow on the ground. I have been thinking this year about a few of my favorite things in Omaha around this time…Nebraska related an others.
1. Brightly colored Christmas Tress at Cirian’s Market on Leavenworth Street
This place is right near my house and every time I drive by and see these pink , blue, purple, and rainbow trees I smile. These trees are ridiculous, not to mention they cost about $100. Someday, I will buy one of these trees and I am sure I will have to make a pro/con chart in order to decide which color to buy. I took this picture while driving and they didn’t have many of the trees out, but trust me they have a rainbow one!!
2. Holiday Cocktails
I am generally a wine and beer drinker but when the holidays come around I bust out the hard stuff. I am just trying to channel “Drunk Uncle” from Saturday Night Live. My favorite holiday cocktails are Manhattans and Negronis. Many Decembers ago, I was a 21 year old hanging out with my friends and getting crazy. We wanted to make Manhattans and had no idea how to make them so I decided to call this older guy I had just met and ask him. That man was Brent, my darling husband, and not long after that phone call did we go on a date. I am pretty sure I have the Manhattan to thank for bringing Brent and I together. The Negroni is a good holiday drink because it is red, and like a Manhattan, it’s very strong. Here are the recipes for you (the way I make them):
2 shots of bourbon
1 shot of sweet vermouth
A dash of angostura bitters
1 Maraschino cherry
Put in a glass with ice, mix.
*If you are Brent, you put a bunch of grenadine in it and a couple of cherries
1 shot of gin
1 shot of sweet vermouth
1 shot of Campari
Put in a glass with ice and mix
*Sometimes I like to put this in a bigger glass and add club soda
3. Nebraska cookie cutter
I got this cookie cutter as souvenir on our big ol’ trip out West this summer. I love it. Even though I don’t care for sugar cookies, and I burned most of the batch, I was very glad to be able to send red (okay, pink) and green Nebraska cookies to my favorite out-of-staters! I would have sent more out, but I burnt about a third of them. I am sure by the time anyone receives these cookies, they will be hard as rocks. I would recommend drilling a hole in them and using them a as a Christmas Ornament.
4. The annual Kosterpelding Christmas Card
This is something forced upon me each year by my husband. I generally dread it but end up loving every minute of it when it happens. He always comes up with some random idea and I just go with it. Here are some samples of past Christmas card photos. These tradition is going to make for several years of embarrassing our child(ren).
I guess for me, these things have made my Christmases more bearable and I imagine as Edith gets older I will find even more reasons to like this season. This year we are mostly just trying to keep her from tearing down the Christmas Tree.