The Santa Cup

The house still quiet…it’s 6:22am. Plenty of time to get dinner under way; no family arriving until 4p. Laptop, coffee, the Christmas tree lit up; so peaceful.

We had a great family tradition of drinking eggnog while decorating the tree, always the first weekend in December. It was a Santa Cupspecial treat we looked forward to every year…my brothers and sister and me with our “Santa” cups full of thick, creamy, super-sweet store-bought carton eggnog, (dressed with a sprinkling of nutmeg), cookies just out of the oven…mom and dad with their cups of ‘nog laced with brandy. Boxes of decorations piled high, I’m still trying to untangle the Christmas lights; though I know for sure they were packed up tangle-free LAST year! (How does this happen?) In front of a fire we’re listening to the Nutcracker Suite, the tree slowly taking shape. Sheet music rolled up and tied up with plaid ribbon, ornaments we made at school, gingerbread men and cookie stars, popcorn strings, cinnamon sticks…

I still have my Santa cup, and became a devotee of homemade ‘nog (none of the carton stuff for this girl!), trying dozens of recipes and my own creations before finding what I think is a perfect recipe. If you start it in the next day or so, you’ll be ready to ring in the New Year with this recipe from America’s “First Family” of whiskey producers, George and Martha Washington! Sampled it the first time at Mt. Vernon about 17 years ago and copied down the recipe. With the rise in popularity of American ryes and bourbon, it’s been popping up in mixology blogs and then went “mainstream.” It’s simple to make and I get it together every Thanksgiving to give it a head start on the aging process (and a big shoutout and thank you to Maganolia Brewery for the best-ever eggnog container!). Seriously, give it a try; you’ll never buy carton ‘nog or use a different recipe again, it’s that good!

Time to finish this post and start prepping Christmas Dinner; in one of life’s greatest ironies, “slow cooking” takes lots of time! Have yourselves a Merry Little Christmas! Be safe, be well, be responsible and we’ll see y’all soon.

In the spirit of Christmas, Peace.