Thursday, December 20, 2007

holiday treats

After some mishaps (including leaving a bag of baking items at the grocery store last week), Em, Nick, and I finally were able to bake some cookies and make other treats yesterday. Besides fudge, marble bark, and snowball cookies, we also made our traditional Painted Eggnog Cookies that we bake every year. The kids love to decorate them with the egg yolk "paint"!

Here is an old layout I made a few years ago, of the kids making the cookies in 2001. (Gosh, Em and Nick look YOUNG! I guess they were! LOL):

I've had some requests for the recipe, so thought I'd post it here:

"Painted" Eggnog Cookies


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup eggnog
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 4 cups flour
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 tsp baking powder

Egg Yolk Paint:

  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/2 tsp water
  • Assorted colors of liquid food coloring

In large bowl, combine butter, sugar, and eggs; beat until light and fluffy. Stir in eggnog and vanilla. In medium bowl, combine flour, nutmeg, and baking powder. Add flour mixture to butter mixture; blend well. Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, in small bowl, combine egg yolks and water; blend well. Divide mixture into several small cups; tint with food color. If paint thickens, add a few drops of water.

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Divide dough in half. On lightly floured surface, roll half of dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut with assorted cookie cutters. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Using small paint brush, paint designs onto cookies with egg yolk paint. Bake at 350 for 7 to 10 minutes or until cookies are light golden brown. Yield: 8 dozen cookies

Yum! :)

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

ice, ice, baby

I was woken up by a phone call at 5:45 this morning, an automated message telling me that school was cancelled due to ice. I tried to go back to sleep, but it never happened....

The kids are enjoying their snow... er, ice... day. Em had a friend over this morning, and soon we are going to bake some cookies and work on our December Days album. I think the roads would've been okay for them to go to school, but better safe than sorry, I guess. I'm thinking the roads may be a bit slick when it's time for George to come home, though.

I just went outside to take pics of the ice on our trees and bushes, and found that the new birch tree we planted this spring (along the side of our driveway) is bent over double. (The rest of the birch trees are all still standing up straight.) Hopefully it will be okay in the long run....

Saturday, December 08, 2007

jingle bells

The kids and I have been working on a small scrapbook for the month of December, a special keepsake of this year's Christmas memories. We've had fun scrapping together, and it will be neat to have a whole book to look through on New Year's Day! This is what we've made so far:

Last night we went to our town's Luminaria festival. Emmalie and her Girl Scout troop helped set up and light some of the village luminaries. The rest of us headed to Village Hall to see Santa. Benjamin actually sat on Santa's lap this year (unlike last year when he just screamed! LOL). He even told Santa that he would like some "zooms" for Christmas. :) We had cookies and hot chocolate, then went outside.

The hundreds of luminaries were beautiful! Ben (and Nick!) had a blast playing in the snow. He didn't seem to care much about the tree lighting ceremony, though, LOL. (The rest of us enjoyed seeing the thousands of lights turn on!) Ben was NOT happy when it was time to leave... he cried, "Snow! Snow!" all the way home. I guess we'll have to take him out in it again today!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

walking in a winter wonderland

It started snowing around 3pm yesterday, and kept snowing all night long. We woke up to about 4 or 5 inches of the white stuff ~ it is so pretty! Ben couldn't wait to go out in it! (And neither could Em or Nick. They were both disappointed to find out that school was NOT cancelled, LOL.)

We had to run some errands this morning, but then finally I was able to take Ben out into the snow. He had a blast! He wasn't really interested in riding in his sled, but loved trudging through the big piles (snow up to his knees!), and throwing snow up into the air. He did not want to go back inside, but I finally bribed him with a promise of hot chocolate! (Mama was cold!!) He'd never had cocoa before, but he knew what "chocolate" was, LOL! He enjoyed his small cup of it very much, though I think he got more of it down his front than down his throat!

I took some pictures, but as always, you'll have to wait to see them....

Monday, December 03, 2007

all i want for christmas...

This will definitely be one of our leaner Christmases, maybe the leanest one so far. That can be disheartening, for sure, so I'm trying to focus on all that we DO have. (That's the main reason why I wanted to write all those thankful posts in November.) Right now, all I want for Christmas is to be able to give the kiddos the gifts they want most, to spend Christmas Day surrounded by loved ones at my grandma's, and to go to Iowa for a few days and see more loved ones there.

But, dear Santa, if you're reading this... it sure would be wonderful to find a winning lottery ticket in my stocking this year! :) It doesn't have to be one of those mega-million winners, either (though I wouldn't turn my nose up at one, LOL)! Just enough so that we could pay off all our bills, buy gifts for our family members, and have some fun money left over ~ that would be great! This is what I would buy for myself, if I could: 3 tickets to see Wicked (for me, Em, and Nick), a new, warm winter coat, the supplies to finish up the home improvement projects we started but haven't been able to finish (tiles and a cupboard for the laundry area, crown molding for the living room, and closet doors for my bedroom), some new scrap supplies to play with, and some clothes that fit.

That's not asking too much, is it? ;)

counting our blessings in 2007

This is an album I made, of things our whole family is thankful for this year....