Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Christmas Wrap Up...

As New Year's Day fast approaches, Christmas is already becoming a memory. As the deSantafication process continues (oh, come on, didn't you watch the Santa Clause 2?), I'm putting things away and wrapping things up...and filled with warm memories of another terrific holiday. I thought I'd share some of the high points!

On Christmas Eve, the kids decided the three cats needed Christmas presents, too. So, lead by Valiant, they went downstairs and sewed up cat toys on Buttercup's sewing machine. As you can see, Tuck definitely appreciates his. (Notice the little embellishment added to the toy...no plain jane toy for these cats!) Oh, did I mention his little toy is infused with cat nip?

Poor Superman made the mistake of "pinky promising" that he'd make these cinnamon rolls for Christmas morning. I found this recipe a few years ago and it is amazing. The recipe is actually called Clone of a Cinnabon and, trust me, they are that good! As you can see, he made enough to share with the neighborhood. (Yep, Superman can save the world and COOK! Is it any wonder I thought he was a keeper?)

I made these towels for some friends after seeing this tutorial at Sew, Mama, Sew and finding some inexpensive "bar" towels. (What are "bar" towels, anyway?) I wasn't up to the patchwork part, but I did love the fabrics I found, so gave it a go. Didn't they turn out well? Now, picture cute little oven mitts to match, doesn't that sound terrific? Unfortunately, those didn't turn out so well, so they stayed home. Maybe I'll have better luck next year!

Finally, the snow kept us in until Christmas day, so these goodie plates (including those cool Christmas trees) were put together Christmas Eve for Christmas Day delivery. This year's goodie plates were very simple and included these Big, Fat, Chewy Chocolate Chip cookies I found via The Mother Load, and these simple vanilla cookies I found in a little holiday cookie book I have. After I snapped this picture, I attached the cinnamon-applesauce gingerbread ornaments we made and we were off. (The cinnamon-applesauce ornaments also have 2 T of white glue and were "iced" with fabric paints, so they last for years!)

Best Big Fat Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup melted unsalted butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325 F. Grease cookie sheets or line them with parchment paper. Sift together flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside. In a medium bowl, cream together the melted butter, brown sugar, and white sugar until well blended. Beat in the vanilla, egg, and egg yolk until light and creamy. Mix in the sifted ingredients until blended. Stir in chips with a wooden spoon. Drop cookie dough by 1/4 cups at a time onto the prepared sheets. Cookies should be at least 3 inches apart. Bake for 15-17 minutes or until edges are lightly

Buttery Almond Cookies

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup confectioners' sugar - divided
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon vanilla * (oh, please! Use at least a tablespoon)
3/4 cup chopped almonds (Um, we truly dislike nuts in our baked goods, so I leave these out!)

In a small mixing bow, cream butter and 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar. Add the flour and vanilla nd mix well. Stir in almonds. Shape into 1-in balls. (Again, I used my Pampered Chef scoop.)

Place 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for 13-16 minutes or until bottoms are golden brown and cookies are set. Cool for 1-2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely. Sprinkle with remaining confectioners' sugar. (I used my shaker.)

There you have it, some of the odds and ends from my first attempt at doing more a bit more of a home-made Christmas. I know I'll do better next year, but I was pretty pleased with what I did do.
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1 comment:

Melissa Henning said...

holy cow you have some awesome recipes on this post! Almost enough to push me over the edge back into sugar town. My hubby (although he's not here and hasn't seen it yet) thanks you ahead of time for the cinnamon rolls recipe lol. I'll make them for him when I am strong enough to not eat any when they are sitting in front of me and I can smell them lol.

You're so awesome.