|The ladies washing corn husks.|
By lunch time, the tamales were done and T Rex Dad arrived home with sandwiches for all. (Seriously, what a guy!) We enjoyed our lunch together, our tamale helper went home but not before she left a beautiful bouquet of flowers for me, the kids and T Rex Dad took naps, and Mom, Sis, and I started the sweet treats making portion of the day.
Cake balls can sometimes cause me a bit of stress so this time I prepared them the night before, chilled them outside (yes, it's that cold), and then when we were ready I just needed to dip them in chocolate. It went much smoother this time around. My sister, using her mother-in-law's unbeatable sugar cookie recipe, started on those. We listened to some traditional Christmas hymns and carols - love Mr. Bing Crosby's "Oh Come All Yea Faithful". The baking part actually went quite fast. It was the packaging portion that took a while. My sister is incredible when it comes to presentation of gifts. She kept thinking up ideas and I just kept crocheting and tying. The finished products were most pleasing.
We had a couple of eager taste-testers, too. (Sugar cookies for T Rex and chocolate cake balls for Bebe Sister.)
We found these little gingerbread house boxes. With those we included a battery operated tea light so when the goodies are gone it can be lit and serves as a decoration. I also made various crocheted snowflakes and stars as ornaments to go along with the packages. (See my lovely flowers in the background? Another are treat.)
Around this time T Rex Dad and the kids woke from their naps. T Rex was a great helper. Bebe Sister was more interested in Dada snuggles. Later when my nephew arrived the kids were very excited to rough-house and play ball.
While my sister and I were baking my mom made fresh flour and corn tortillas. She rarely makes corn, which I actually prefer, so this was a rare treat. Did I even mention my mom has her own tortilla business? She does and is becoming quite famous in our little city. Seriously, these are amazing tortillas. Back on topic, dinner was oh so delicious. We get tamales about once or twice a year usually reheated from the frozen ones we've made. Fresh and hot - wow and a rare treat!
My brother-in-law stopped and picked up caramel and chocolate apples from our local chocolate factory. Another treat. Again, we usually have these once a year. We enjoyed dinner conversation and proceeded to gift opening. T Rex was more than happy to help. My mom crocheted me a beautiful angel and found some antique hair accessories as I've been wearing my hair up quite a lot, particularly when working at the clinic. My nephew added some more Christmas tunes to my playlist, and my sister...wow! Her gift was the rarest of rare treats.
I actually have a blog post that I wrote months ago but I have not published it. It just did not seem finished or completed. Without going into details, I'll work on posting it later this week with a photo of the gift. It was the best gift my sister has ever given me and let me tell you over the years, particularly as a kid, she gave me some pretty cool ones. It's not diamonds or money or anything of significant real value except to a select few individuals. I look forward to sharing more with you.
It was indeed a day of many, many treats. Thank you to all who made it possible. I look forward to sharing my actual birthday with my two little kid treats and my sweet, sweet husband. How fortunate and blessed I am.