… and the hostess was stirring …

It’s 6:30 a.m. on Christmas morning, and I can’t sleep. I’m all atwitter, of course, because in less than 8 hours the hordes will descend upon our house for our annual Solstmas open house, possibly the largest event I’ll host all year. And although I can’t say there are exactly visions of sugarplums dancing in my head, there are at least visions of cheddar-ale soup, and glazed ham, and a carefully constructed ice ring for my punch, which I hope I can unmold without it falling apart. It’s the calm before the storm, and I really enjoyed watching the sun rise over San Francisco from my kitchen, where I had already assembled various pitchers and serving platters in preparation for the party.

The calm before the storm

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