Monthly Archives: December 2020

A Gift Cake {And A Giveaway!}




Hello Farmgirl friends!  I hope you have had the loveliest of holidays.

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It’s Christmas! (2020)



Hi Farmgirl Friends! In the words of Andy Williams’ carol, “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year”, and as far as 2020 goes, that statement could not be more true- though for 2020 to have anything be wonderful this year is a stretch. It’s been the worst year ever, we all know, and the thought went through my mind (briefly) to not celebrate Christmas at all. Then I realized, just like Nora Krank did in “Christmas With The Kranks”,  that I adore the holidays, and this year, more than ever, we need some cheer! We won’t be seeing friends or family this season, so grab a cup of cocoa and share a little holiday with me, won’t you?

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Bring on the Hope and Joy and Peace and Love

The events of 2020 have impacted how we experience the holidays, AND LIFE.

Won’t you take a moment to share something with us? How are you doing this holiday season of 2020? How do you feel? What are you doing differently? Are you hanging in?

Me? I say:

Bring on the HOPE.

Bring on the JOY.

Bring on the PEACE.

Bring on the LOVE.

We need it.

By the way, I don’t really have any relevant photos, so I’ll just share some random ones from the year.

After an odd Thanksgiving, I’ve thought a lot about our holidays this year.

I am definitely experiencing the holidays differently both externally and internally.

What I’ve learned so far during these last 9 months is that if we look hard enough, we can find goodness in our current situation.

IMG_9209                                  I picked the last of the season a week or so ago


You might remember, if you’ve visited with me here for a while, that my quest has long been for a simple life. I’ve begged you all to tell me your secrets. I’ve read all the books. I say it every Christmas.

I’ve struggled with society’s demands for expensive complications for the season. My heart’s desire was to capture the “old days.” I’d long for the nothing other than the hope, joy, peace, love. I’d vow to leave behind all the trappings and commercialism.


 This was in my local FaceBook feed. One of the joys of living in the country. 


I remember the first Christmas at my Christmas tree farm in the Appalachian Mountains. It was 2012. My daughter and I joined the local church for caroling. A local farmer took a crowd of us in a tractor-pulled hayride throughout the community. We’d stop at houses and carol. We sang all the traditional carols as loudly and as best we could. Sometimes we’d struggle for correct lyrics, but it didn’t matter.

I remember an elderly woman who insisted that we come into her warm house. We squeezed into her den like sardines to sing while some carolers crowded into the open front door and others sang from the front porch. I recall two things about that stop. One was the woman’s face. She had the sweetest smile and blue eyes that sparkled. The other memory is how hot it was in her home. We were in major winter wrappings and her house at 85 degrees inside. It was perfect.


  Do you see the sweet red church with a steeple on a hill behind my horse shed?                            That’s the community church where I used to live.

I had lived long enough by then to realize that I was making a special memory. I drank in every moment, gluing it to the corner of my brain where lovely memories are stored. It was a cold, clear, magical night. I remember looking up to the moon-lit heaven as we bumped along a country road and felt that special thing in my heart. You know the thing? It’s warm and open and fluttering and peaceful and gentle. It penetrates you.

That was a simple Christmas event that meant the world to me. If only I could capture that every single year.

But I fail and fall into the rush, rush, rush.


And then along comes 2020, and suddenly I’m well on my way. It’s shown us what is what. We see better the value in what is truly valuable and the frivolousness in much of what we thought was important.

For real: this year does anybody care about the trappings and commercialism? The stuff and the gifts? The over-decorating? The waste of food? The rush, rush, rush?

This Christmas my energy is focused more on the foundation of the holiday rather than the glitzy decorations, fun parties, and fabulous presents.


             The quiet munching of Merlin. Pure peace.

              Excuse his witch’s knots on his mane and his fur stained with Georgia red clay.


In about a week, we’ll go find a live tree to cut down, or we’ll bring home an already cut tree. It won’t be the largest and most perfect tree. It will be a medium-sized tree, probably flat and missing branches on one side. We’ll put the bad side towards the wall and put a few strings of brightly colored lights on it. Then we’ll add the ornaments that we have. (When we packed up our belongings to move to the new farm, no Christmas decorations jumped into our moving boxes. We’ve started from scratch.)


  Last Christmas when we brought the tree inside.

                                                    That’s Jimmy.

                                     He loved the tree-in-the-house concept.


These days, I don’t go shopping unless it’s necessary, so there will be no rushing around looking for perfect Christmas presents. Any shopping I do will be at the sleepy, local shops that really need the business. My town has a coffee roaster, a candlemaker, a liquor store, and a bookshop. Who wouldn’t want fresh coffee or a candle or a bottle of brandy or a book?

IMG_9317 (1)

  I just opened a Dove Peppermint Bark piece of candy.

                                                  This is what it said. 


Oh yes, they’ll be cookies. Yes, they’ll be lasagna on Christmas Eve and a turkey on Christmas Day. They’ll be buttered rum and eggnog. Oh yeah, they’ll be Dutch Babies for breakfast. But this year, we won’t make more than we can eat or share. This year we vow that NO FOOD will go to waste. That’s a challenge.

After my late summer dance with figs this year, I’m determined to find a recipe and make “Figgy Pudding.” Let’s hope it’s good since we will have to eat every bite.


December 2020 has begun as a month of deep gratitude and simple merrymaking. This year our holiday will be more simple, sweet, green, modest, and holy.

Let’s do what our grandparents did: make the most and best out of what we have.


                        I paused to admire the sunset the other evening.

Bring on the JOY.

Bring on the HOPE.

Bring on the PEACE.

Bring on the LOVE.

Bring on the MERRYMAKING.


Until next time, Friends,

Savor the Flavor of Life

Rebekah, The City Farmgirl in the Country