December 24, 2009

It's Christmas Time in the City

Christmas is shaping up around here. It's been a busy, overwhelming, and a kind-of fun season so far this year. Wow, is that scrooge-ish or what? I think the deal is . . . I started a new job right after Thanksgiving, and, my brain power for anything outside of work has significantly lowered in the last month making Christmas preparations far more overwhelming than usual. Anyway, I have been working on a few things, I promise - I just can't reveal a few of them until tomorrow, but I can show you the other things I've been up to.

I woke up on Saturday morning with what felt like a LONG to-do list. To be honest, it wasn't that bad. Nonetheless, I woke up, had some breakfast, was enjoying some time reading my Bible, and then out of nowhere got into one of those moods that was like "Ugh, my life is so hard. I need to take a nap because that sounds far more doable than my ever-growing to-do list." It was a very sad state, so I succumbed to it and I napped - at 10:00 AM!

Once I woke up, though, I had a come-to-Jesus moment, realized my life wasn't so bad and that I could carry on. Good grief! I hope other people do this kind of thing too. It's got to be normal, right?

First thing I did was finish up the Christmas cards. I really enjoyed that process this year. Here's all the different kinds that came off the assembly line:

Once again, Jesse wrote the recap of our year for the letter inside, which always makes me laugh. I love that man.

Later, I did a little baking. I started with molasses cookies. Yum! For some reason I was craving them last Christmas season, and I found a yummy recipe. Here it is:

Yummy Molasses Cookies (with icing)

3/4 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup white sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup molasses
2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. ground ginger

Mix together butter, sugar and egg. Stir in molasses. Combine the last 6 ingredients in a separate bowl. Blend flour mixture into the molasses mixture. Cover and chill for 1 hour. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Roll dough into walnut sized balls, and roll them in a small bowl of white sugar. Place the cookies onto ungreased baking sheets - beware, they will grow! Bake for 8-10 minutes, until tops are cracked.

Once the cookies have cooled, make some icing.


1 egg white
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

Beat the egg white until frothy. Then, beat in the sugar and vanilla until thoroughly mixed. Spread onto cookies, wait for the icing to harden, and . . . enjoy!

Lastly, I got inspired by a friend to make some biscuits for the pups in the family. So, I did some baking and then sent some packages out to my sisters and their sweet dogs.

They also got some strawberry jam, which I had been promising to to Em for a long time now. Mom got a package too, but she got molasses cookies for her pup (Dad) instead of biscuits. It sounds like he's already enjoying them - having claimed the whole bag before Mom even saw them. Now, before you think I just left Ben and Ali out of this mix completely, you'll have to see what I made for the kiddos . . . but not until tomorrow!

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