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As the young came into the hall, Santa’s note was seen by all but read by an older child. The children headed to the drawing room, then the dining room and the library. Fireplaces, but no presents! Are there any other fireplaces? Outside they went and the number of chimneys were counted! There must be. Finally, could there be fireplaces upstairs? Go and see! The proverbial charge of the light brigade upstairs ensued, halted only as the light came to an end. A frantic search for light switches ensued. Switch finally found, helped by a friendly mum. The hunt continued from room to room. Whoops of joy as small piles of wrapped presents were found. “Mum, they’ve got fireplaces in the bedrooms!”  was the surprised comment from one small boy. Santa’s instructions were carried out. The presents are under the Christmas tree until Christmas Eve, when Santa will make sure they go down the right chimney. Hence the reason we always make sure the chimneys have been cleaned out before Christmas Eve. Santa doesn’t like to get soot in his beard.

The children were invited to a Gingerbread Making Party.

Rules of Engagement

  • Turn on the oven
  • Wash your hands
  • Put on an apron
  • Read the recipe and then begin


Ready for the Off

Gingerbread Cookies

½ Cup fat, (butter or margarine).

½ Cup molasses

½ Cup sugar

1 egg

3 ½ Cups plain flour

2 tsp. baking soda

½ tsp salt

1½ ginger

1tsp. cinnamon


  1. Melt fat and cool it. Add molasses, sugar and egg and blend well.
  2. Sift together flour, baking soda, salt and spices. Add a little at a time to molasses/fat mixture. Mix well.
  3. Wrap in cling-film and chill overnight.
  4. Roll out on a lightly floured surface to ¼” thickness.
  5. Cut into shapes.
  6. Bake at 160°C for 10-12 minutes.

The young all went home with lots of gingerbread folk.

Multyfarnham Country Fair 9th December 2012

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This year, we only took jams and chutneys, together with gingerbread men, we had made for the sale. Great result, lots of returning customers and all sold out!

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Earlier last week, we made Stollen. Something we have been making each Christmas.

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Dough portioned, ready for shaping

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Stollen ready for proving

Cut showing marzipan centre

Baked Stollen showing marzipan centre.