Managing Monday’s: Share Your Knowledge

Managing Monday’s: Share your knowledge

Our sense of smell is an amazing thing. It can trigger memories long forgotten, bring a certain person to mind, cause a gag reaction or worse, and change your mood instantly. The smell of coffee brewing when I am still in bed, the fresh-cut grass right after the rain, the scent of a baby’s skin after a bath and powder. These are just a few for me, but the one that stands out over all is the smell of my great grandmother’s cinnamon bread baking in the oven. It is the quintessential smell of Christmas for me.

This recipe was introduced to our family in the 1950’s after Mom and Pop Hill(as we all called my great grandparents) had moved back to their home town of Ft. Collins, Colorado when Pop Hill retired from being a congressman for 18 years in Washington DC. It became Mom Hill’s signature bread and she would make it for Christmas, whenever the grandkids were coming, to welcome new neighbor’s or comfort a friend. It was never just cinnamon bread it was Mom Hill’s cinnamon bread.

The summer before my mom got married in 1960, she asked Mom Hill to teach her how to make this very special bread. My dad says she did not learn much else but she could definitely make this bread! I am not sure when it became a Christmas tradition for my family growing up, but I can not remember a Christmas without it either. The images in my heart and mind of my mother kneading the bread, the special blue and white bowl it would be placed in to rise. Then the incredible smell of it baking and cooling on our green formica kitchen counter.

I am sure I begged to help when I was a child, wanting to eat some of the dough and just be close to my mom. I do not remember the exact age I was when she taught me this coveted recipe but I do know it was way before I got married. I have been making this bread for at least 30 years and my kids have never had a Christmas without it. I have at times mass-produced it for gifts as this is what my mother would do. You always wrap it in foil with a ribbon of red or green on the top.

My sisters bake this bread as well and I think my sister Kathi has the record of baking forty loaves in the month of December. My sister Kristi taught her son Evan to make it when he was just a toddler. This was my year to pass the torch to Jessica. She loves this bread, and loves to cook. I wanted her to be able to learn and to share this recipe with her children as well. My boy’s are less interested in this, as it takes time to do, and they would much rather eat it than labor over it with love (I will make sure they know how to make it before they get married though.)

Many things have been lost in our instant satisfaction society. We have chosen to buy, consume and move on to the next thing. It is essential we take time to share our knowledge with our children. Baking, woodworking, quilting, whatever it is, our children want and need to learn their family history, they want to know that there is more than just right now. Jessie did a fantastic job, and hopefully Mom Hill’s cinnamon bread will be shared for generations to come. My great-grandchildren will have this scent imbedded into their memories and when they smell its unique aroma they will remember the love of their ancestors and the taste of true Christmas Joy.


5 Comments so far
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Yeah love this bread and always will.,

Comment by Kathi

yes oh Queen of the cinnamon bread

Comment by Kari

A wonderful story! This is a family tradition for at least 3 of the 4 of Mom Hill’s grandchildren and it’s amazing to think that the great-grandkids and great great grandkids are enjoying it too. What a legacy.

I made this d-lish bread recipe last week – for our grandsons, Silas and Moss, and to have when Travis (another one of Mom Hill’s great-grandchildren) arrives for Christmas.


Comment by Anonymous


So funny, I never really thought about you making this bread too, that just makes it all the more special. We are very blessed to have such a wonderful heritage to share! Again thanks for reading and commenting, it means so much to me

Comment by Kari

That bread looks amazing!!!

Comment by backwoodsmom

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