Sunday, December 25, 2016

Bonus post - Cinnamon rolls

inside caption: I want buns of cinnamon.
I did a search for cinnamon roll envelope and did not find any envelopes, but thought this was a fun image. It's a card for sale on Zazzle. They have many very cute cinnamon roll images. I needed a visual to go with my cinnamon roll story that I have been composing while the rolls rise and then take to the oven.

The first annual Christmas story.

OK, Alyse says she enjoyed my circa 1996 Christmas eve story. Here’s how things are going two decades later. The younger of the two hockey players is going to be 29 in February. He has a degree in communications, not broadcasting/journalism, but actual clarity in communication between people. He agrees to show up and help me with the Christmas eve meal. When he was little, the Christmas eve gathering was at the paternal grandparents so all we had to do was get dressed and get out the door. Between 10 and 15 years ago, the grandparents had aged to the point that our family started hosting the Christmas eve dinner. 

I am a benevolent dictator in the kitchen. All my kids knew how to either follow directions to the letter or hide in their rooms. I don’t care if you want to help, but if you are in the kitchen, don’t even think about free lancing. Guess who - after 37 years hasn’t wrapped his head around THE ONE RULE of the kitchen? You got it, the guy who wins the Big Brain Award every year because he is truly smart and does a lot to keep all 5 wheels going on the Wilson Family Vehicle. The dad, the husband, the grandpa.

Keep in mind, 10 years ago, there were usually 11 people for dinner. This year we are down to four people: Jean, the husband, the 28-year old male offspring, and the 90-year old mom of the husband. Grandma will be able to join the crowd for Christmas brunch, but going out on Christmas eve would have been too much. So we pack up a nice surf and turf dinner and take it to her. We get home and the three of us are standing in the kitchen discussing the schedule for the morning. Jean needs to bake cinnamon rolls for 17 people to take to the family brunch at her sister-in-law’s house. Everyone knows to stay out of Jean’s way at the cinnamon roll portion of the holiday as dough is very time sensitive. And the year that she forgot to sprinkle the cinnamon on the dough before rolling, because nobody can ever locate a belt and think they can just waltz into the kitchen and ask me if I know where their belt is. Yes I know where it is. It is plain sight in your room and even though I warn them that if I leave my post and walk into their room and if the belt is in plain sight they will not want to be in the same room with me and of course we walk into the room and of course it is plain sight and of course Jean points to it and  Jean’s dagger-eyes flash a warning at the kid but she has to get back to the cinnamon rolls so they know they are getting off easy -a-g-a-i-n- but then when she gets back to the kitchen she forgets to sprinkle the cinnamon on the rolls and OK a decade has passed and Jean never holds grudges and she was pretty sure she could let this one go but every dang year when she gets to rolling of the rolls she has PTSD about the year that she forgot the cinnamon and I swear if one of you ever sends me a winning lottery ticket because you feel so sorry for me I will get some professional help….but I digress.

Back to Christmas eve 2016:
Jean is inserting the detergent tab in a loaded dishwasher to run it in the evening so it is empty in the morning. Mr. Wilson, who has just consumed a kick-butt surf and turf dinner that took all day to prepare and took exactly 22 minutes to consume - that Mr. Wilson - forgetting THE ONE RULE, starts rearranging the dishes in the dishwasher. 
Jean asks, “What are you doing?” 
Mr. Wilson: “Making room for more dishes.” 
There are no more dishes. They are all in the dishwasher. and Jean is clearly inserting the detergent tab which means she is ready to turn it on.
Jean states clearly, “ I have to run it now because I need it empty in the morning.” 
Well, I there must have been a tinge of something uppity in my voice, because Mr. Wilson decided to make some kind of obviously-attempting-humor remark - and included the label passive-aggressive. 
Hunter, the communications expert, sees the blood boiling behind Jean’s eyeballs and quickly defuses the whole situation with this remark, “Dad, I don’t think that was passive, I think that was just pure aggression.”

And a good laugh was had by all. 

So, the cinnamon rolls are in the oven. I don’t know how much iPhones cost, but they are worth every penny. All you have to do is ask the phone -by speaking- to alert you in 5 minutes or 10 minutes or whenever you want your next alert. Sadly, my memory is full or I would take a picture of the cinnamon rolls. 

Mr. Wilson has scurried through the kitchen a couple times. Clearly, he just needs a little refresher course every now and again. But it is only 10 am, so we aren’t going to hold our breath.

May everyone be enjoying this day as much as they enjoy every other day. Feel free to vent or share in the comment section. I know we all have warm and fuzzy memories as well as blazing inferno memories. Hopefully they all end up being funny s-o-m-e-d-a-y.

Today's regular post is right below.


  1. Thanks for the laugh this evening! I'm a neighbor WAAYYY to the north of you - no wonder it was smelling so good last night. Pretty sure you remembered the cinnamon this yr! :)

  2. Now I'm hungry for cinnamon buns. I don't know that I've had any that weren't made from the Pillsbury can in the grocery store.
    I enjoyed your story. It'll be interesting to see if Mr. Wilson will remember the rule next year.
    I'm not happy with my 34 year old son. When we left their house today, it was pouring rain. It takes me a long time to get to our vehicle. Walking with the walker, with my husband getting wet while he holds an umbrella over my head. He had a few additional trips to make. There was no offer to assist his father.
    But preceding that was an enjoyable afternoon watching our grandchildren play together. A child's laughter is one of my most favorite sounds.
    And . . . . . . it's Alyce, not Alyse. I think it's funny. It's better than Alice. People that don't know me, call me Alice or write my name as Alice.
    Time to address the last dozen Christmas cards. I'm publicly stating that I am going to start making my cards for next Christmas in January. It hasn't worked just telling myself.

    1. I have a long history of not remembering how to spell your name. If it is any consolation, after knowing my brother for my entire life, I do not know how to spell Kieth or Keith, his middle name. I am a VICTIM of phonetic spelling lessons - which make no sense. They have rules and then they have exceptions....and what's the point of rules if you have exceptions. Either have rules or don't have rules. It's been a very hard life being a phonetic speller. I am one of the few people who embrace the new trend of shortening and rogue spelling. I might have to put a formal rant on the blog about this....

  3. Yes, I remembered the cinnamon. But, I had a double batch of the dough in the big green bowl. As I was making the first half, I put the second half back in the bowl and set it on a high shelf - and then forgot to assemble it. I did not find the dough until a couple hours after the brunch. So, now I have dough left over to make some fresh ones today. Mr. Wilson doesn't know. Boy is he going to be surprised.

    When you say WAAYYY north - are you talking Duluth? My parents left St. Paul and moved to Duluth when I was in college here in Des Moines - so I have fond memories of the WAAYYY north.

  4. You are such a good writer, I really enjoyed reading this!!!

    1. Thank you. Even my brother says he enjoys the stories, so I will probably continue - and then maybe cross post them in a blog titled, You're Gonna Miss Me When I'm Gone....since nobody in my family reads the blog and maybe after I'm gone, they'll enjoy the stories. It's fine with me that they don't read the blog. I'm happy that they are off doing their own thing. Clearly I am not someone who wants to keep close tabs on the others...