Christmas at the Farm (and the story of the Pig Fish Jello Mold)

Cathy ZielskeCZ Life19 Comments


Because of the Christmas Snonami of 2009, our celebration with Dan's side of the family was pushed to December 26th—Boxing Day to my Canadian friends and relatives—so we all gathered last Saturday to celebrate together.

You know you're in the right place to celebrate Christmas as you take off your boots and gaze upon the cork art image of Jesus and children.


The boys and men were quick to get outside for some fun in the snow. (Well, the boys were a bit quicker on the "Let's go outside and play football" than the men folk. But the men folk always rise to the occasion.)


And yes, if you think it looks like a harsh and unforgiving football climate, you would be correct. It's also the primary reason I took only two photos. I'm no fool. I will stay in with the meat and cheese platter, thank you very much, and the wood-burning fireplace.


Yes…the ladies stay inside and stay cozy, like cousin Maria and her mama, sister Stacey.


After the outdoor frolic and numerous egg nogs, it's time for our meal, prepared lovingly by Grandma Joanie, with carving assistance from Papa.


Which led to perhaps the strangest of Christmas delicacies, which has since been dubbed: the Christmas Pig Fish. I present my sister in law, Deb, and her delightful if not confounding creation:


Aside from the fact that she looks like a Farm Kitchen Food Network host, let's take a closer picture of the jello creation, shall we?


Now I believe it's supposed to be some sort of pineapple, but all I could see was a snout and two eyes, and scales. In other words: a Christmas Jello Pig Fish.


Seriously. This is like something you might have seen in the background in one of the hospital scenes from Jacob's Ladder or something. In other words: disturbing.

Despite our inability to accurately peg the creation's genus and species of origin, it was quite tasty and I truly hope the Pig Fish returns as a tradition in the Zielske family celebration.

Next up, gift opening.


Gift opening at the farm has evolved over the years. What was once a mad, free-for-all of small children ripping paper and screaming while adults pegged each other with wadded up balls of the discarded wrappings has given way to a much more ordered, one-person-opens-a-gift-at-a-time affair, while adults peg each other with wadded up balls of discarded wrappings.

Cute teens open matching gifts…


…and dweeb Dads make the shots so much  more magical.


One of my favorite gift moments was when Grandma Joanie opened a gift from Cole.


Cole made her a manger scene out of Sculpey at the urging of his sister, so Joan could add a new set to her already amazing collection.



And after that, I put my camera down and ate every thing sweet I could get into my mouth.

Another lovely Christmas at the farm—one day late—has come and gone.

Cathy ZielskeChristmas at the Farm (and the story of the Pig Fish Jello Mold)

19 Comments on “Christmas at the Farm (and the story of the Pig Fish Jello Mold)”

  1. #10
    Joy M.

    LOL….Coming from the midwest myself, I sure miss those jello molds! Thanks for the morning giggle, Cathy.

  2. #13

    Sounds perfect – love that – snownami. And Jacob’s Ladder….I don’t think I’ll ever look at red jello in quite the same way.

  3. #15

    Love the wall paper behind Deb.
    Pig fish makes my stomach roll.
    But Cole’s creations are awesome! We went through a sculpy stage, I even gave up my pasta maker so that my 13 yr. old could roll sculpy through it.

  4. #16

    Thanks for sharing your family with us.
    And as for the Christmas JellO Pig Fish—
    isn’t that in some Lutheran Church Basement Woman’s cookbook or something.

    Just no lutefisk, thank you.

  5. #19

    Is it possible you misspelled Cole’s name on his birth certificate? I think you meant to name him Coolman…
    cause that is definitely what he is becoming.

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