As many of you know, we are a military family and move often. For someone who likes rhythm and structure, this hasn't always been easy for me, and there have been plenty of times when, in the absence of any real structure, I flop down on the sofa and pretend I'm somewhere else (usually our last duty station).
All of this change wreaks havoc on traditions. The longer we stay in one place, the stronger our little traditions become. We might spend Christmas Eve at a particular church and then dinner party (NC) or have a Christmas Eve potluck with classmates and then attend church (PA) or anything in between. That's one of the best parts of moving, actually: the constant adventure and window into new worlds.
But one tradition has really stuck with our family when it comes to Christmas. Aside from the usual suspects (tree, gifts, stockings, cookies), every Christmas morning I bake Orange Scented Olive Oil Sticky Buns from Food 52.
On Christmas Eve, I prepare the dough and roll out the buns. They rise over night. Christmas morning, while we sip French press (parents) and eat stocking candy (children), the sticky buns bake. We eat a breakfast of sticky buns, bacon, eggs, fruit and mimosas while we rest up after all of the gifting excitement.
This year I was tempted to forgo the sticky buns. Truth be told, there's a lot of sugar going on in this household on Christmas morning. The kids are a little over it by the time we make it to the table. But then both of the kids mentioned the sticky buns, asking if I'd gotten the supplies and when I'd start the dough.
I realized that through all of the moves, the few traditions we cling to mean a lot to them...and to me. So, sticky buns it is!
If you're tempted to try, they're a fresh, bright update on the regular cinnamon bun. They're yeasty and doughy and just sweet enough, which is perfect with a strong cup of coffee.
I read once that traditions don't become traditions until we let go of them and come back to them. I like that because it's a forgiving, fluid way of thinking about habits, traditions and rhythm.
No matter what you're eating on Christmas morning, I hope it's lovely.