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24.12.12

55 Visions of sugar-plums ...


... I've often wondered about that line, it's always sounded a bit trippy to me! But then I discovered that a sugar-plum is in fact a comfit, generally a sugared almond, and not a sticky sugared plum at all**. Who knew?! Not me, and sugared almonds are one of my favourite Christmas treats. Chocolate brazils, posh ones, are essential too. And pecans and salted pistachios and roasted chestnuts ... I could go on! It's going to be a nutty ol' Christmas at Knitso Towers if my dodgy jaw allows. How about you? Nut fans or not? And which are your favourites?


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Whatever you're nibbling on this Christmas, may it be a joyful one for you and yours!

HAPPY CHRISTMAS


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* Sarah Noble Ives' 1907 cover illustration for the much loved 'Twas the Night Before Christmas, or 'A Visit from St. Nicholas' (1823), the poem largely responsible for our associating Santa Claus with a sleigh, reindeer, and chimney descents. My apologies for entertaining you with yet another vintage image, but the best of my cameras is currently being repaired and the other was loaned to a friend and won't be back with me until later in the week.

** Suddenly I see The Nutcracker's Sugarplum Fairy in a whole new light, she belongs in a way that candied fruit never did!


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Postscript. I hope my fellow bloggers will forgive my tardiness in leaving seasonal good wishes on their Christmas posts. Unfortunately, instead of spending a happy hour or two this evening catching up with everyone, I spent four hours at the local veterinary hospital in company with a mince pie thieving whippet. That's mince of the raisins, sultanas and currants variety, not so very many grams of which can cause renal failure in a smallish dog. A dose of apomorphine (an emetic), another of activated charcoal, and a blood test later and we're home again, at two in the morning on Christmas day. The husband, who left his mince pie within reach of the whippet, is in the dog house - he should know better - and my bank balance is in the doldrums, but thankfully the whippet is now in the pink. And I'm hoping that by sharing the reason for our unconventional start to the festivities another day another dog just might be spared some similar unpleasantness. Happy Christmas!

55 comments :

  1. Have a wonderful nutty Christmas Annie. We'll be scoffing chocolate brazils and salted cashews here too (amongst lots of other goodies). We'll also be reading that book tonight before bed - part of family tradition and although Amy is playing it cool now she's a teenager I think she's still as excited as she was when she was little! Have a lovely day tomorrow x

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  2. Salted almonds, pistachios and walnuts for me, Annie. Wishing you a very happy Christmas and all the best for 2013.

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  3. Dear Annie
    Sorry to be a bit of a Scrooge but I don't eat any nuts (not even if they are chocolate coated!). I think it's the texture that I don't like. I do like the colours of sugared almonds though.
    Have a lovely Christmas and peaceful New Year.
    Best wishes
    Ellie

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  4. Chocolate dusted almonds. Yummy.
    Have a wonderful Christmas, Annie. Jx

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  5. There will be some spicy-sweet glazed nuts on our festive board this year. I do like nuts, though I have to remind myself to eat them. Cashews, pecans, and macadamias are my favourites (all the pricey ones, of course), and I ADORE butter toffee peanuts (which of course aren't really nuts at all).

    Vintage images are generally appealing, and this one is no exception. So no apologies please!

    A very Happy Christmas to you and yours, Annie, whippets included. :)

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  6. I have just filled up on rubbish already and it is still only the Eve of the Christmas - another year, another inch added...
    Best wishes to you and yours
    Jenny

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  7. I love nuts and hate dried fruits, but my husband is the opposite. Comes in handy when we're sharing a box of chocs! Merry Christmas Annie to you and yours x

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  8. Merry Xmas Annie and best wishes for a wonderful 2013...looking forward to visiting you once again and reading your always very entertaining posts!
    Susan x
    P.S Yes, I'm definitely a nut fan and I LOVE this illustration!

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  9. We are a nutty family too. When I was a child I always bought sugared almonds and walnut whips for my father, he loved them. I always cook with ground almonds anyway, but we shall be munching walnuts, pecans, cashews and anything else really, but with a nut cracker!
    Merry Christmas.
    Kate x

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  10. Never apologize for Vintage Images!!!!!!!

    I'm liking cracking open pistashios, and loved Jordan Almonds.

    Happy Christmas Eve...

    Happy Christmas...

    "Auntie"

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  11. I'm quite looking forward to post-Christmas food, you know something light and fresh and not covered in chocolate. Can you tell I've already had too much of a good thing?

    Have a lovely Christmas Annie x

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  12. We are nutty and chocalatey here! Have a super Christmas.
    June

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  13. Merry Christmas to you and your loved ones, Annie!

    See you soon.

    Stephanie

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  14. Wishing you a very blessed and cheery Christmas lovely Annie, have a wonderful time xox Penelope

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    1. Oh sorry I meant to say "you and your loved ones"... Alice distracted me with all her bubbly Christmas night excitement!:o)

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  15. Hope you have a magical Christmas!
    Victoria xx

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  16. Have just read that poem to Finn as he drifted off to sleep. I rather hope he is dreaming sweet dreams! It is a beautiful image. Wishing you a wonderful Christmas Annie x

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  17. Merry Christmas Annie - I hope you have a beautiful and relaxing time.

    Nina x

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  18. happy christmas Annie, enjoy your nibbles! I am just wondering where I might be able to buy more quality street tomorrow!! Heather x

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  19. Wishing you a wonderful Christmas Annie ... enjoy your nutty nibbles ... Bee xx

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  20. Wishing you and your family and all the Whippets a very very Merry Christmas. We forgot to buy a treat for Remy Boy this Chrustmas and was wondering what you get for your Pooches? Have a wonderful day! Mel x

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    Replies
    1. They love the toy rats from IKEA! So every year they get one of those and an absolutely huge rawhide chew which keeps them busy right through Boxing Day!

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  21. I identify oddly with the comment above about longing already for post Christmas food! Strange for someone who loves Christmas to be already looking for cheese on toast.

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  22. Merry merry Xmas darling.....love from me ...enjoy these days.....thanks for your friendship.....love you ...Ria...xxx...

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  23. Merry Christmas dear Annie. Lovely image and nugget of information before I get woken with tales of how he's been.

    See you on the other side of it all.

    Lisa X

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  24. Merry Christmas Annie, to you and your family.
    Have always enjoyed the book, The Night before Christmas and such a magical time. Love your book.
    Happy holidays
    Hugs
    Carolyn

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  25. Hi Annie. A very Happy and Blessed Christmas to you and yours. My....but your whippet has an unusual diet. Why don't you feed her ordinary food like other dog owners? You seem to have spent a lot of time and money at the vets recently!
    Thank you so much for the encouragement and inspiration that you've been to me these last months. I have enjoyed exploring all sorts of issues on your blog and look forward to further 'meaty' debates
    Love and hugs
    Joan

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  26. So glad the dog is okay. Now I know what I forgot! NUTS.

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  27. Merry Christmas Annie! Never realised that dried fruit can be so harmful to dogs and glad to hear the whippet is fine now. If only they knew not to eat these things! My favourite festive nut indulgence would have to be macadamias and dried cranberries.

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  28. Oh dear! That was my greatest fear for your beautiful mince tarts when you blogged about them. And just last night (our Christmas Eve) i had Googled a list of foods that are poisonous to dogs to read out to everyone, and raisins were on the list. I'm glad your sweet puppy is okay, but sorry you had to go through all of that. Why, oh why don't dogs have a sense of what is bad for them to eat?

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  29. Buon Natale Annie!!!
    xxx Ale

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  30. So glad your whippet is okay! Scary (and expensive, I know) but all turned out well in the end.

    Merry Christmas to you and yours!

    xo
    Claudia

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  31. Have a lovely nutty Christmas Annie. Cashews are my favourite!

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  32. Never a dull moment with the whippet around. Merry Christmas to you and your family.
    Meredith

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  33. Freddy made himself especially tall last night (he's a cocker spaniel---he's really rather small!) and managed fortunately to just swipe an extra large buttermilk biscuit, making more crumbs and a mess than doing any doggie damage. So glad to hear your pup recovered quickly.....we had a real scare a couple years ago when we found Freddie ON the table with the chocolate truffles. They do keep us on guard, don't they???

    Hope your day is wonderful, Annie (and no more trips to the vet!)

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  34. Happy Christmas Annie and to everyone at Knotso Towers !!!! :)
    V xxx

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  35. A very happy Christmas to you too Annie. Sorry to hear about your whippet traumas. (Your dogs do seem to rather take their toll on your sleeping patterns and your bank balance!)

    Gillian x

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  36. I love the charming vintage design you show above. I am glad you explained sugar plums too - I had rather wondered about that!
    Glad the thieving mince pie culprit is out of danger. There's never a dull moment with pets or small children around, is there?!
    Happy Boxing Day! Sandra

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  37. I hope you had a wonderful, relaxing day Annie! xx

    S x

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  38. I'm so glad to read that your little whippet is all better, and I hope that you're Christmas is going much better now that the bad start is out of the way. Eleanor told me about raisins being potentially fatal for dogs but it's something I'd never heard of before.

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  39. Merry Christmas and I hope your dog is better. What a naughty one. Stealing the pie..

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  40. Goodness me, hope the rest of your Christmas has been peaceful and drama free.

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  41. Happy Christmas, dear Annie, you absolutely must have a few extra sugar almonds after that worry and drama!

    my grandmother had an especially beautiful bowl for nuts with an old silver? nutcracker in it so they could always be eaten super fresh ... happy memories ...

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  42. Oh, ouchie! I hope you have pet insurance? Your dog's culinary theft is what I would call "wai-sic," meaning although he may have known he shouldn't be swipin' human food, he just couldn't help himself and had no self-control, LOL.
    Other than that, hope you had a wonderful Christmas and thank you for clarifying what was in the mince pie. I had Googled it yesterday and didn't know if you did minced meat or the fruit variety.

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    1. Oh and I love how you say "trippy" too!

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  43. Chocolate brazils if I had to choose, but when comes to nuts I'm not at all fussy! Poor wee whippet and you, thank goodness you spotted what had happened (I knew raisins etc were bad news but not why). Hope the rest of the holidays are a lot more relaxed. Julie x

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  44. Hi Annie, I love all your gorgeous prints that you show on your blog. Oh dear, what an expensive doggy Christmas, do you think your dog will have learnt not to eat mince pies (prob not). Wishing you a wonderful New Year, see you in 2013, in blog land I mean, although one day we may meet face to face.
    xx Sandi

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  45. Oh Annie! A mince pie mishap. I so hope the mischievous whippet has recovered and that the stress has evaporated.

    I'd like to say that you've been one of the people who have inspired me to learn to knit in recent weeks. I haven't yet ventured towards three dimensions but my confidence is growing a little. I'm going to try v. hard with the runrig muffattees. Thankyou Annie xxxx

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  46. Hope you and your loved ones have had a lovely Christmas Annie!

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  47. Wishing you a happy, healthy year ahead, filled with happy, healthy whippets!

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  48. Oh my! What an eventful Christmas! So happy to hear that the pup seems to be alright. Is the husband out of the dog house yet? Wishing you a peaceful and lovely rest of 2012 and happy 2013! May you get some epic knitting done!~

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  49. I had some peanut butter fudge!! So yummy. Sorry about the mince pie incident. So glad the Whippet is feeling better. I hope you had a lovely Christmas and here's to a Happy New Year!!!

    xoxo
    Selena

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  50. Happy New Year, Annie. I had no idea about the toxic properties of mincemeat for small dogs. Have been hearing about another daft dog eating a box of quality street, complete with wrappers, which entailed a vet's trip too.
    Here's to 2013! Moira x

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  51. Oh Annie, I just read about your poor doggy and the mince pie incident and so happy to hear that he is doing fine now.
    We had a trip to the Doctor on boxing day - our Son was making a model and accidentally got some glue which had squirted out from the tube.
    Life eh! and these things sometimes are set to try us.
    Best wishes for the year ahead and I look forward to visiting you and thank you for your friendship.
    hugs
    Carolyn

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