My mother always made sure the house was decorated with evergreen wreaths, handmade straw stars and bees wax candles everywhere [and a buckets filled with water in the corner of each room in case anything caught on fire]. With chilly temperatures and sometimes even snow-covered hills that surround our tiny town in the Kinzig Valley of the fairy tale Black Forest it has always been a time where the house was filled with the smell of freshly baked Christmas cookies, hot chocolate and oven-baked cinnamon apples and the kitchen table was packed with paper, straw, glue, thread, glitter and other craft items.
Living in Northern California, and snowy hills far away, that contemplative and festive quality time with my family is definitely something I really miss. But German friends are not far and we all make sure to connect our German roots with our California lifestyle. We gather for baking and advent brunches or teas and sometimes even for very European Christmas Eve dinners.
These gatherings are always filled with laughter and chatter and we all forget a little bit about the distance between our new homes and old traditions. Last winter, I thought there was no better reason to make a few of these fun little egg warmers that my mom always put on the boiled eggs during brunch. Until everyone was done chatting and updating each other on the latest village gossip we were easily 3 hours into our brunch. But even then the boiled eggs were still warm.
Happy Advent time everyone!