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Winter Holiday Fireside Moments: Interview with Brenda Novak

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 It’s that time of year when the chill in the frosty air brings us indoors to hunker down with thick comforters and mugs of steaming hot chocolate overflowing with fluffy marshmallows.  When holiday music and movies become the soundtrack to our everyday home lives. When we gather ‘round the fire for company, drink, food and love.  When we are celebrating and remembering those we treasure and hold near and dear.  When the real meaning of the season is family – by our DNA or by our heart.  When we reflect and give thanks for all we have. In a nutshell, unconditional love.

I’d like to welcome Brenda Novak to share the beauty of the season with us.

Favorite Holiday tradition?

Baking and frosting fancy sugar cookies on Christmas Eve and running out in the cold to deliver them to various friends. 

Favorite childhood toy?

Barbies (I’m still playing Barbies, in a way–but now those Barbies are the characters in my books. LOL) 

Favorite childhood game?

Chinese Checkers

Snowball fight or making snow families?

Both?

Sleigh rides, sledding or skiing?

Sleigh rides

Favorite Holiday song?

Enya’s Christmas CD is amazing, but I also love Elvis’s Blue Christmas and O Holy Night

Favorite holiday movie?

Planes, Trains and Automobiles

Favorite holiday story to read?

The Three Trees (a folktale)

Snow on holiday eve or just a chill in the air?

Hmm…since I live in Cali and wouldn’t ever want to leave, I’ll go with the chill (together with a cup of hot cocoa). 

Most memorable holiday memory?

My first daughter’s first Christmas. That was also when she took her first step.

Did you eat popcorn balls as a kid? If you did, do you still?

LOVE popcorn balls. Make them for every Halloween

Real tree or artificial? Green or white?

Artificial because they come with all the lights. LOL Definitely green.

What do you holiday eve?

Bake/frost sugar cookies. Make homemade noodles (by hand–ack!–but it’s a family favorite). Open one gift.

What are your holiday plans this year?

To gather my children and enjoy our time together.
What’s the one holiday dish your family can’t go without?

The homemade noodles which make homemade chicken soup (they fight over these). 

Please share a Holiday recipe.

MINT BROWNIES

2 c. sugar

4 eggs

2 cubes butter (softened)

8 T cocoa

1 T vanilla

1 t. salt

1 3/4 c. flour

Beat for two minutes and spread in greased 9×13 inch pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes at 350 degrees.

 

Frosting:

3/4 c. butter

2 and 2/3 c. powdered sugar

2 T. Evaporated Milk (up to 1/4 c.)

1 t. mint extracct

 

Drizzle real chocolate thinned with Crisco over the top, if you want to dress it up. Yum!

Holiday party tip?

Homemade food? So many people buy stuff for parties these days. Gone are the times when everything was made from scratch (and it tasted so much better).

Favorite holiday decoration?

The lights!

Please share some magical holiday memories?

The first year my husband and I were married, he bought me so many gifts. He wrapped them all and created a huge pyramid that reached the ceiling of my mother’s house. My family was amazed–had never seen anything like it. That was probably my best Christmas — not because of the presents because I was so, so in love (still am but it’s not quite so new a feeling). 

About Diane Morasco