Fly on the Wall – December

Fly on the Wall

Have you ever been curious about what goes on in other people’s homes when they think no one is watching? (hint: you might need a little help, if you know what I mean.) Here’s your chance to give in to your voyeuristic tendencies and be a fly on the wall as a group of brave bloggers opens the screen to let you in once a month. Watch and learn, my buzzy little friend! After you’ve read my post, click on the links at the bottom and fly over to to read the others.


There have been so many things going on this month, I’m afraid you’ll drop from the wall and land with your little feet in the air, buzzing pathetically in circles by the time you read through this post. (Cheery thought, huh? Fa la la la la.) I don’t have kids to throw me little one-line humorous lines, so I have to resort to telling you all the fun stuff I’ve been up to.

Before I start listing all the festive fun stuff, there was an interesting conversation at Thanksgiving. Youngest son (Lord Voldemort) was here, and it was just the three of us. This would usually make The Man very happy, since he detests confusion and noise and people – especially on holidays. He had the house and all that food to himself, but was still a bit grumpy and…well…bossy.

Me to The Man: “Well, YOU woke up kind of bossy this morning.”
Lord V chimed in: “Yeah, about 5 decades ago.”
The Man: “That’s because there are so many people in this world that are intellectually unarmed. They need guidance.”

What can you possibly say to that?


If you’ve read my blogs in the past you’ll know I’m just a wee bit OCD. I like to count stuff. I count dishes as I load them in the dishwasher. I count laundry as I fold it. I guess it’s just a way to relieve boredom and keep me on task. So all of the December countdowns I’ve been involved with have been!

There was 12 Cakes of Christmas, where a group of bloggers each chose a day to present a festive cake. Mine was a Brownie Bombe. What a fun bunch of ladies to work with!

There is my “24 Shirts of Christmas” countdown I’m currently doing on my personal Facebook page. Yes, I actually own 24 Christmas Shirts. Here are a few of my favorites:
MiscDec2013vixenshirt dec 11




And there was a fun virtual advent calendar a bunch of us did for Karen, of Baking in a Tornado (the organized genius behind Fly on the Wall.) We each picked a day to post something fun or sentimental for her to “open”. I created a cake recipe for her using hot cinnamon liqueur. You can see it here on Day 16.

Add in an Orange Cranberry cake for my Yummy Northwest Column and one for the Homemaker’s Club luncheon, and flour has been flying.

Orange Cranberry Cake


Then (cue Johnny Mathis singing “We Need a Little Christmas” ) I saw a really cool log cabin made out of pretzel rods on Facebook. The reasonable version of this creation can be found on Worth Pinning’s awesome blog.

I, however, don’t like to do things the easy way. I prefer to stay up until 3:00 a.m. swearing like an ironworker. I had to complete my cabin by the next morning because my friend and fellow blogger Stacia, of the blog Dried-on-Milk, had challenged me to a pretzel cabin competition, and I’m not one to back away from something like that! To hell with the grandkids’ presents…the cabin came first!

I invited anyone and everyone to join in the fun on my Rowdy Baker web page, but….crickets. I think that made it official: Stacia and I were the only nutcases willing to throw reason aside in the middle of December and work on a totally non-essential project!

Here’s how it looked when I started. Um -the wine was just to get the creative juices flowing. And to lessen my frustration when trying to notch the brittle pretzels.

Ready, Set, GO!

Ready, Set, GO!

And…later. Much, much later:

Making a huge mess.

Making a huge mess.

How can you build a log house when the logs all look like this?

How can you build a log house when the logs all look like this?

The final result.

The final result.

Was it worth all the time, money, and patience? Hell, yeah!

For Stacia’s – ahem – unique take on the competition, check out her blog! Virtual Challenge

The man tolerates my messes because he has no choice. The kitchen looked like Christmas had exploded, and he just walked around looking dazed. We had our 35th anniversary this month…but this mess almost sent him over the edge. It can’t be easy living with me!


In case anyone thinks I just ruined my chances for Grandmother of the Year, I want it known that after two all-nighters I managed to get both of the girls’ presents done and shipped JUST in time. A few years ago my youngest granddaughter, Taunee, was given an enormous candy cane for Christmas by her auntie and uncle. Taunee hates peppermint, but they didn’t know that. They got her a nice gift too, but her reaction was priceless and will always be repeated every year by the whole family:

“Whyfor you think peppermint is a good present? This is the most ruinist Christmas EVER!”

I did not want to be responsible for making any Christmas worse than that for the poor child! However…and this was The Man’s idea…we decorated our granddaughter’s presents with packages of Sixlets (you know, those little fake chocolate candies in the bright, toxic, food coloring shells) and then in the hopes that they would sneak and eat them before they were allowed to actually open the gifts, we included this photo inside one of the presents.nose candyHopefully they won’t read this and spoil the “surprise”!


Now buzz off and check out these other blogs. And, MERRY CHRISTMAS to you!

Baking In a Tornado
Just a Little Nutty
Menopausal Mother
The Sadder But Wiser Girl
Follow Me Home
Spatulas on Parade
Sorry Kid, Your Mom Doesn’t Play Well With Others
The Momisodes
Moms Don’t Say That
Juicebox Confession
Writer B is Me
Dates 2 Diapers
Kiss My List Adventure into Domesticland

21 thoughts on “Fly on the Wall – December

    • Ah. A fellow obsessive πŸ™‚ I gave the house away to a family with little kids, so I’ll never know how it tasted. Did I mention the floor was “tiled” with Andes mints? Sigh.

  1. You totally get Grandma of the year! πŸ™‚
    I love it! This is exactly the stuff of awesome gift giving memories!
    The pretzel cabin turned out gorgeous!
    I love you just a little bit extra to know that you own 24 Christmas shirts. <3

  2. “The most ruinist Christmas…” Poor girl. Oh, and to think that it takes a WHOLE YEAR until next Christmas!!!
    Love your Holiday sweaters and the Pretzel House!
    Never a dull moment, right?

  3. Pretzels are one of two foods that make me nauseous, but you make them look . . . fun. I LOVE the houses you can create with them. The other food I don’t like is okra. Please tell me you won’t try anything with that next year. Or ever.

    • I PROMISE! Pinky swear. How can anyone be nauseated by pretzels? Personally, I only eat them for the salt. Okay, and maybe the crunch.

    • Thanks! Let’s just say it took a good picture. An up-close-and-personal inspection would have shown its many construction flaws. Meh.

  4. Oh, Michele. It’s worse than that! I spent the night before cutting out templates, but when I started working on it, I realized the logs weren’t long enough for the “Andirondack” style I’d chosen! Scrapped it and just winged it. The ruler did come in handy though when I had to figure out how long to make the window and door pieces. My grandpa was an engineering professor, and let’s just say he was pretty disappointed in his less-than-mathmatically-inclined granddaughters. He probably would have been building it with a slide rule!

  5. Lemme get this straight: you swear like an iron worker, you throw an entire night away to make a (STELLAR) pretzel log cabin, you take photos of yourself with peppermint sticks hanging out your nose, you illegally drink copious amounts of wine to ‘get the creative juices flowing’, and you created a hot cinnamon liquor cake….I think you might be my new BFF! Lorinda, you complete me.

  6. You know, I really fell off the Cmas socks … I still wore them, just kept forgetting to put the pics up. Dammit! (There’s a teeny bit of my inner ironworker!)

    Maybe next year I’ll do the pretzel house–is that going to be an annual contest?! πŸ˜‰

    I always love the Fly on the Wall!!

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