Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Bunnies for Breakfast?

I was talking to the furnace guy the other day about geothermal and we just happened to glance out the kitchen window to check the backyard for square footage. We spotted this juvenile red-tailed hawk sitting in the red bud tree. He was focused on a rabbit that had taken cover under a wheelbarrow in the veggie garden. I have seen owls, sharp-shinned, and Cooper's hawks in the back garden, but never a red tailed.  He was huge....and obviously hungry.   He stayed put for about ten minutes, then gave up on the quaking bunny and flew away.

Filed Under "Christmas"

Now that things have settled down a bit, I wanted to post a photo I snapped the other morning after assembling the Monkey Bread. This sugary delight represents a long-held tradition in my version of Cooper Christmas. Yearly, this gooey breakfast treat was popped in the oven to bake while the kiddies opened their presents from Santa.  The recipe card, which is just as special as the bread and the tradition it represents, was passed to me by a sister-in-law from a Christmas of long ago. I remember her assurance that there would be lots of memories stuck to those sugary balls of dough. Mary was so right.

This year's memory attached to the Monkey Bread will be especially poignant with Ev's arrival home from Vietnam. Last year, Christmas was spent in Nha Trang, Vietnam on a beach that looked out on the waters of the South China Sea.  It was the first Christmas the kids went without their beloved bread.  We had just gone through the line of the hotel Christmas buffet where Tess had made a bee-line to the German stolen. She took that first bite and declared, "Not Monkey Bread!"

Looking at this photo today, I remember the sticky fingers of my children clutching their newly-unwrapped Batman and Barbie, carried to the breakfast table to share our Christmas feast of sugary bread, sweet tangerines, and hot cocoa.  Barbie and Batman have long since been packed away.  However, each year when I pull out the recipe card for Monkey Bread, all the special memories flood my kitchen - including a Christmas so many years ago when Mary shared her secret for the Holidays.