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  • Delicious tradition

  • Traditions are important to a family, and if they're delicious, so much the better.

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  • Traditions are important to a family, and if they're delicious, so much the better.
    Beverly Peterson, Pittsburg, loved the time she spent in the kitchen with her grandmother and wanted to create those memories for her own grandchildren. So, every year before Christmas, she and her grandchildren gather for holiday baking.
    “We've done this every single year, at my house or my daughter's house, ever since my granddaughter Savannah was 18 months old,” Peterson said.
    Savannah is now 12, and has a little brother, Keaton, 10, and sister, Julianne, 3. They are the children of Peterson's daughter and her husband, Jennifer and C.J. Huff, Joplin. Formerly of McCune, the children's father is Joplin superintendent of schools.
    On Saturday Peterson's kitchen counters were covered with rolled out cookie dough on waxed paper, plates of cooling cookies fresh out of the oven and bowl after bowl of candies for decorating the cookies.
    “There's nothing more Christmasy than cookies,” Peterson said.
    The two younger children were cutting out cookie dough. Julianne was making reindeer cookies with pretzels for antlers, while her brother was striking out on his own with some original designs, including the letters K for Keaton and C.
    “The C is for Christmas,” he explained.
    In an earlier session the family made gingerbread houses. One of them has a U.S. flag flying from it.
    “Grandpa is a veteran and he wanted a gingerbread house with a flag,” Peterson explained.
    She's gotten into gingerbread houses big time lately.
    “Last weekend my sister and I flew to Dallas for a Delta Delta Delta fundraiser for the Mirza Children's Hospital,” Peterson said. “They had tables upon tables of candies to select and pre-made gingerbread houses for us to decorate.”
    She also loves gingerbread men and collects ornaments and decorations in that theme.
    “It all started with a little ornament Savannah gave me when she was nine months old,” Peterson said.
    The ornament is of a gingerbread woman with eyeglasses and on it is written “I Love You Grandma.”
    “It reminds me of me and the cheater eyeglasses I wear,” Peterson said. “That got me started collecting gingerbread men and I have quite a few.”
    She brought back a large gingerbread man from Dallas and gave it to Savannah to decorate.“It's too bad I didn't take her to Dallas with me, because she's doing a better job of decorating than I did,” Peterson said.
    Savannah said that she enjoys cooking and baking.
    “She makes homemade hot chocolate and doesn't use mix,” Peterson said.
    “Savannah's latest thing is crepes,” her mother added. “After dinner she'll ask if she can make crepes, and we say, 'Sure, go ahead'.”
    Page 2 of 2 - Julianne has her own baking project coming up.
    “She's going to make a birthday cake for Jesus,” Peterson said. “I asked her what kind of cake she thought Jesus would like, and she said chocolate.”

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