I'm of Norwegian extraction, but the closest I've come to "The North" is Norway, Kansas, where my mom grew up. I dream of seeing the moss, fjords, and aurora borealis
for myself, and I got a tiny bit closer two years ago, when I was given the gift of A Norwegian Christmas..
I'm telling you, there is nothing better than curling up on the floor by the fire, surrounded by a snowy landscape (Illinois is not Norway, but it still rocks some sparkly snow), reading a pile of books about Scandinavia. Collected at antique stores, thrift stores, and online, my gift included Time Life's The Cooking of Scandinavia
(which has a Christmas section), Christmas in Scandinavia
, two books of Norwegian folk and fairy tales, the charming hand-stapled Aunt Hildur's Best Recipes
, the James Beard Award-winning The Great Scandinavian Baking Book
, and a jersey from the Norwegian women's soccer team. Earlier, I should have said, "there's nothing better than curling up on the floor by the fire wearing a Norwegian soccer jersey"!
If I can't spend Christmas in Norway, the next best thing is having Christmas in Norway brought to me — with bonus sunlight! Has anyone ever given you a winter wonderland sort of gift? Maybe rented a snow machine like on Modern Family
last year, or built you an ice rink like on Gilmore Girls
? Have you ever made wintry magic happen for someone on your gift list?
(Photo: Tess Wilson)