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Eating my way through Christmas goodies

By the time you’re reading this column today, hopefully all of my Christmas cookies and goodies will be digestive history.

Honestly, December and January are sugar-charged commitments to the nth degree.

Our kitchen island has been a hub for cookies and candy and all things sweet, a pile that grew as much as it has dwindled through the weeks at a rate that runs parallel to sweet tooth cravings and activity, which, believe me, have been elevated.

Among them is a big tin of all kinds of chocolate covered cookies — two layers of them — that is such a distraction, I finally put a Post-It note on the lid that reads “NO” followed by about five or six exclamation points.

It was supposed to stop me, but it’s not very effective, though. I conveniently ignore it when a craving overpowers me. The note reminds me of those “No Peeking” taunting messages you put on Christmas gifts to keep would-be early-openers at bay. Inevitably they’ll be ignored. Go ahead and look!

I can go many, many disciplined months content with fruit as a dessert, without being a sweets monster, but once Halloween rolls around, look out, Loretta. The downward spiral begins, ultimately rotating out of control from October on.

I have all but abandoned baking at Christmas, a tradition I once embraced when the kids were little and I wanted to impress them with my look-mommy-bakes skills. Anything you could put an inch of icing on came out of that oven in December.

But my children would grow to betray me, not really inheriting their mother’s sweet tooth or more like sweet teeth. All that sugar was too much for them.

So I quit baking, but that didn’t stop the glut of goodies. So many people I know are so nice around the holidays and come bearing their baked goods, candy and homemade holiday treats.

I have a friend who, among other things, always brings me a quart of her homemade eggnog and a container of chocolate-covered peanut clusters. She no sooner leaves than I shift into appreciation mode. Picture a grown woman chugging a quart of homemade eggnog in between ferocious bites of chocolate-covered peanut clusters.

Picture a grown woman wiping a drip of eggnog from the side of her mouth as if she’d just completed some fete of great athletic prowess.

God as my witness, I never in my life would have expected hearing myself say “I’m so sick of sweets!” but I have uttered the confession a time or two recently and lamented the whole toll it takes to whittle away the stash of Christmas cookies in my midst.

I mentioned this at the dentist’s office the other day. I was there to have a tooth repaired — one broke off a bit, probably no thanks to the exertion it takes to chew so many Christmas cookies. It is there I am comforted, though, by thoughtful dental professionals who play such Prelude-to-Novocaine classics as Carly Simon’s “Haven’t Got Time for the Pain.”

My tooth fixed, though, I can move on and get ready for the next season, round two.

Bring on the Valentine’s Day treats.

(Kiaski, a resident of Richmond, is a staff columnist and community editor for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times. She can be contacted atjkiaski@heraldstaronline.com.)

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