Life's great journey is made up of day by day delights.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

I've been fa la la la lazy about blogging!

Well not so much "lazy" as insanely busy.....ok, fine. I may have procrastinated a little as well. Just like everyone else this time of year I have been going, going, going so blogging has kind of been put on the back burner of priorities. For that, I apologize.
Buying gifts? Check!
Wrapping gifts? Check!!
Making goodies? Check!!!
Clean house for the holiday? Check!!!!
I am so happy that I can say I am done with everything for the holidays. Now, all that is left to do is work (2 more days),celebrate and enjoy the day with those that I love. I am so excited! And relieved. I admit I kind of love some of the last minute holiday mayhem but it really is nice to know that I can just sit back and take it all in without worrying about what I need to do next.
Yesterday, I finished up the last of my gift wrapping. I really enjoy gift wrapping (a lot) but this year I feel I dropped the bar a little. I didn't have enough time to go all out like I normally do but even still I am quite pleased with the end result. I like LOVE the wrapping paper I got this year. I got it at the all great Hobby Lobby for 50% off which makes it even better in my eyes. It is a lovely red houndstooth pattern that makes me all giddy inside just from the mere sight of it. Feast your eyes on this....

Next I started working on my Christmas goodies! I'm going to tell you right was magical. haha Ok, maybe not but I sooooo love making goodies and listening to Christmas music. Doing that takes me to my happy place. And this year I got to do it in my kitchen, with my cookie sheets, and my oven. I <3 being a newlywed and getting to start these little traditions in my own home thrill me to no end. Yes, I miss being at my parents doing this while my cats would watch in wonder but there is something equally satisfying about doing this as well. It was so fun with the Christmas music turned on and being able to make the cookies while looking out my kitchen window at the winter wonderland before me. I'll be honest...I danced a little. Yep. It happened. Like my arms out, spinning around like I'm a ballerina. What?!? The music moved me. :-)  Of course the dancing took place in between me frantically cleaning the kitchen when I spilled maraschino cherries and their icky juice all over the kitchen counter (which easily stains) and sweeping up m&m's that would roll off the table. Ugh! Anyway, I had a blast and this year I tried a new recipe for Holiday Ribbon Cookies (
Although my cookies don't look perfect, they don't look bad either. Check them out!
These are Holiday Thumbprint Cookies ( I topped some with sugar pearls and some with peppermint sprinkles!

Holly! This is a holiday staple in my family. They are like rice krispy treats only with corn flakes and the green food dye. Traditionally the recipe has one top the holly with red hots but those are hard when you bite down so I have started using mini m&m's. They work out great!

Holiday ribbon cookies (also from Betty Crocker). The layers you see are poppyseed, chocolate walnut, then maraschino cherries (the source of the aforementioned spill.)

Just some of the seemingly endles pretzels I made. I make these every year and they are a huge hit because I use all sorts of toppings to make them more unique. I buy the Andes mints bits and top the pretzels with them. DIVINE. I also use red and green m&m's, peppermint sprinkles, sugar pearls, Heath bar pieces, mini chocolate chops, coconut, nuts and anything else that seems like they might make my pretzels extra special!

Eric and I tried to stay within a certain budget this year and because of that I am giving a lot of my goodies as gifts to family and friends. To make my treats stand out I like to package them with an Anna twist. Here is what I mean....
I got the bells in a pack of 21 for $5 from wWal-Mart, the bags (pk. of 20) for $1 also @ WM, and the ribbon is another great WM find for $1. Inside these bags are cookies, pretzels, Christmas bark, and other various snacks.
These bags are filled with Muddy Buddy chex mix (yum!!!) To spruce them up, I criss-crossed the candy canes on there which I think make them extra festive!

Christmas is almost here! Can you believe it? :-)

What are some traditions you have? What about treats, what are your favorites??

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