When the red red robin comes bob-bob-bobbin’ along…

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For the two bakeylicious girls robins are a sign of Christmas.  “Why robins?” I hear you ponder.  Well every year at the beginning of December a robin would visit our garden reminding us that Christmas was coming.  My mam loved seeing that bird.  It always made her think of her mam and she would smile.  The year my mam died we were visited by a pair of robins in the run up to her favourite time of year.

Christmas is a time of family togetherness but for many people there are holes in that togetherness – people are missing – there are gaps that can never be filled.  But sometimes you may see something, hear something, feel something, that brings those people to mind, holds them close, makes them there with you.  For us it’s a robin or two because when we see them we remember our mam and our gran.

And it makes us smile.

What is your sign that Christmas is coming?  What makes you smile at Christmas time?

Christmas Kitchen Memories

Christmas is the most bakeylicious time of the year. 

The house smells of cinnamon and excitement and whatever alcohol the dried fruit is soaking in.  And each smell triggers a memory.  Smells do that. 

My Christmas kitchen memory is of my mam making her Christmas cake.  It was a family recipe packed so full of fruit that each slice must have counted for at least 3 of your five-a-day, and stirring it was shoulder-wrenching work but it was worth it because everyone who had a stir also got to have a wish.  I’m not a great lover of fruit cake – I much prefer a light sponge – but Christmas isn’t Christmas unless I’ve had a glass of sherry and a slice of my mam’s cake, baked by my sister and wished upon by at least five members of the family, including me.

For those of you that like a smaller taste of Christmas than a traditional 8-inch round, I discovered the perfect idea last year – the ultimate Christmas cupcake…Christmas cake in a cup from The Pink Whisk. I loved making and decorating these with my two year old last year and am looking forward to doing it again this year, making a Christmas kitchen memory of our own that also makes me think of my mam and smile.

What is your favourite Christmas kitchen memory?