This weekend my mom and I spent almost 9 hours baking Christmas cookies. It is a tradition we have always had and I look forward to busting out the aprons and rolling pins each year. This year was different though. Usually I sit and help decorate the cookies or am in charge of keeping an eye on the timer and getting the cookies onto cooling racks. But I started to realize that just as my mom is the matriarch of our family, soon too one day I will be that to mine. Being the oldest sister and the first to be married and have kids has pretty much inaugurated me to that roll somewhere in the near future.
My prayer is that my mom would be around forever but I know one day she will want me to take over on the cooking and baking for the family (hoping this is not for many many years to come). So this year I paid attention. I looked at how she would read her recipes and then check things. I watched for the little things she did which you cannot explain on a recipe card. I watched where she kept her recipe books, tools, and which ingredients she preferred. These cookies are so much more than a delicious treat. They represent love from many of our friends and families that have been shared with us and now fill our home.
Being the matriarch of the family is a huge role and is one that is glue to a family, at least in ours. My mom and I decided to start recording all of her praise worthy meals into a cookbook. It is a big tasks and no where near complete but I am excited to have things in print pretty soon so that my sisters and kids will always have our traditions to pass on. This Christmas Eve and day I will be paying attention yet again. The food, music, ambiance, and love that my mom puts into every holiday, birthday, and Sunday meal is simply the best. I know that there is no way I could ever or would ever take her place but I hope that as I get older I can create an environment for her and our family that is like what she has created.
My mom will continue to go over board with everything she does and I will continue to tell her to slow down. But she has a quality about her that is to be admired. She is selfless and giving. She creates memories. Good memories. My mom is the best matriarch. When we had nothing and when we had something she always made us feel loved.
Who keeps your family together? Your mom or dad? Your grandparents? Your children or siblings? Do you spend holidays with neighbors and friends? How do you plan to keep your families traditions passed down for generations to come?