Holiday Comforts

by Heather

This post is sponsored by Tempur-Pedic, the brand millions of owners trust to deliver their best night’s sleep every night. Enjoy our Buy 2, get 1 free pillow offer now and give the gift of custom comfort to someone you love.

The hardest part about getting married wasn’t learning to share a bathroom with a boy or adjusting to a TV that only gets sports stations. The hardest part of marriage is not going home for holidays. Six months after getting married, I woke up on Christmas morning in a small apartment to a 2 foot Christmas tree, no stockings, and no magical spread of presents that had mysteriously appeared under the tree overnight. While I was happy to share my first Christmas with my husband, it just didn’t feel right. I couldn’t quite get that it was actually Christmas and not just some imposter holiday.

When the next Christmas season rolled around, we had moved out of the tiny apartment and into our house. We still didn’t have many Christmas decorations, but we borrowed a full-sized tree from the husband’s office and set it up in the living room like it was the best and biggest tree in the world. We hit up Target for some stockings and hung them on the mantle. {We may have stuffed them with wrapping paper instead of presents, but that was besides the point.}

christmas morning

But it wasn’t the house or the tree or the stockings that made that Christmas just a little bit easier to handle. See, I’d forgotten one very important thing. It’s part of what makes the 25th Christmas, and not just another 25th day of the month. There was one thing missing that first year besides my family: the smell of cinnamon rolls wafting up the stairs on Christmas morning.

It was tradition growing up: stockings, cinnamon rolls, presents. As far back as I can remember, there have always been cinnamon rolls. Even when my mom got married and we combined holiday traditions for the first time, there were still cinnamon rolls served along side the breakfast croissants.

So now when I can’t be home for Christmas, there is one comforting thing I can do. On my list of holiday shopping duties is one extra task: stop at the grocery store for a roll of cinnamon rolls. This isn’t the time for homemade baking or healthy eating- it’s time for the blue can stuffed with ooey cinnamon bun dough, artificial cinnamon flakes,  and a cup of premade icing.

vegan cinnamon rolls
When I wake up in the morning, I crawl out of bed and quietly head downstairs. I slowly peel back the wrapping on the can and smack it against the counter, waiting for the familiar pop of the cardboard tube. I line the pan with cooking spray and stuff the rolls inside, making sure they’re all touching so there can be that extra gooey center roll. I put them in the oven, set the timer, and head back upstairs to drag the husband out of his Christmas slumber.

He moans and protests like he usually does, until he remembers it’s Christmas and he has a younger sister waiting for him to open presents at his parents’ house. But first, he has something else waiting for him. It takes him a minute to realize what it is that’s different about that morning’s air. Then he slowly figures it out- it’s the smell of baking cinnamon slowly starting to drift up the stairs. The timer beeps and he’s finally awake and starting to get out of bed. While he finishes coming to life, I head back downstairs to finish the job: I drizzle the icing over the hot cinnamon rolls, letting it melt and spread into all the crevices. By the time the husband has made it downstairs, there are two plates of cinnamon rolls sitting on the coffee table in front of the hand-me-down Christmas tree.

I’m not in the house I grew up in with my family nearby, but at least there’s one thing that reminds of home. It’s as simple as cinnamon rolls that get me through the next few days until we go home for Christmas with my family. It’s the comfort of tradition; something being the same when everything else is different. It’s the smell of cinnamon early in the morning, biting into the slightly undercooked center cinnamon roll, the distinct popping of the cardboard tube of dough, and the simple fact that the same brand of cinnamon rolls hasn’t changed in years.


Comfort is the perfect gift for everyone on your holiday gift list, so be sure to take advantage of Tempur-Pedic’s Buy 2, get 1 free pillow offer! I was selected for this sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Kristina November 21, 2011 at 9:56 am
Thanks for this post. This is my second Christmas as a married woman (though last Christmas was so close to our wedding that we didn't do anything and it just kind of blended in with the wedding). This is the first year we have decorated and started some new family traditions.... Every year on Christmas my parents and I would go to the movies (my half siblings all spent it with their other side parent and I was left home alone with mom and dad). Last year not only did the three of us go, but my husband and his parents joined us too. Mostly because their were more people there. This year its already started to feel different. It's a mixed of no wedding craziness, not being in my parents house, or a home with just my new husband (we moved in with my in laws 6 months ago when I lost my job). Decorating for Christmas was a big thing at my parents house... everyone got involved and it took the whole day. This year I did most of the decorating myself... while my husband studied for an exam. I could go on and on how its different. On one hand I am happy for the change- I am happily married and get to start some of my own family traditions.... on the other hand I am still trying to figure out my new role. this is only year one of being a married woman.... versus 27 years of being single. Thats a lot of years with the same routines and traditions that pretty much vanished in a matter of hours. It's nice hearing similar situations and has me thinking of ways to not make the transition so hard and also of traditions I can start with my family so the holidays will be special for my family Kristina Just blogged...Frames Part 1
Carolina John November 21, 2011 at 10:37 am
There is a lot of comfort in seeing the whole family together for the holidays. And now you're going to be creating the holiday traditions for your new surprise! That's the best part. Carolina John Just blogged...Over the Peak
mekkie November 21, 2011 at 12:32 pm
Nothing like some sugary treats to remind you of the holidays. :D mekkie Just blogged...Fun with Eggplant and Giveaway Winners
Tiff @ Love Sweat and Beers November 21, 2011 at 2:15 pm
Awww - precious post. I drag the hubby to see the fam. He likes the extra magic. :) Tiff @ Love Sweat and Beers Just blogged...The Weekend of Food
Purabi Naha November 30, 2011 at 9:00 pm
Yummy rolls, look just like the professional ones! I loved your blog and now I am following you on facebook. Please feel free to follow me back if you wish. Purabi Naha Just blogged...Guest Post: Easy Meals - The Fundamentals of a Delicious Curry
Mac Fryer December 12, 2011 at 2:33 pm
It is hand made sugar cookies that brings back the Christmas memories for me. We always made them with my mom on the day we put up the tree. Mac Fryer Just blogged...Moving Out of Parents House Checklist

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