You guys...I am so behind on Christmas baking this year! Normally I begin at the very beginning of the month and sometimes before! This year, I have made exactly two things so far...out of a list of over 15 items! No bueno.
We have managed to do some fun "Christmas-themed" outings. I refuse to take the kids to the mall or someplace to sit on Santa's lap, but I'm all about having breakfast with Santa Cow. Lucy was particularly enamored with the large bovine. At the breakfast, the kids made a cute picture frame to commemorate their visit with Santa Cow. They also got to tell Santa Cow what they wanted for Christmas, to which Santa Cow responded by telling them they need to ask for more chicken.
In other news, it is finally starting to look like Christmas around here. We go big or go home around here, as evidenced by our temperatures swinging from sunny and 60 degrees to freezing cold and snowing in a 48-hour span. We have about two feet of snow outside at the moment and between the drifts and constant snowfall and my determination to keep the driveway free of ice, I have shoveled the snow about five times each day since Thursday. It's a war. At first I thought Matthew was going to be a huge help to me. When he saw me getting ready to go shovel for the first time, he cried "I'll help you Mom!" and rushed to get his hat and coat on. Well, once he was outside and he took one turn across the driveway and discovered how heavy and laborious the task truly was, he abandoned his post ("Here Mom. Shoveling is too hard for six-year-olds!") and proceeded to pelt me with snowballs while I finished everything up. That kid's a twerp.
When we got back inside, Matthew requested hot chocolate. I thought that sounded good, so I got out the cocoa powder, milk, and sugar and made a big batch from scratch. Matthew took one sip of the finished product and declared that it tasted "soapy." I have no idea what he was talking about since the girls and I finished our mugs without a complaint. There's just no pleasing everyone around here!
Ok, that's my complaint about the snow for now. The reason for this post is Christmas baking! This week, I plan to scratch gingerbread houses, sugar cookies, and two types of breads off the list. Let's hope it gets finished. The kids are really looking forward to those gingerbread houses. We build them, we look at them, watch them slowly stale over the next couple of weeks, and then throw them away while the kids all cry and protest. Why do we repeat this again every year? It just is something that must be done especially since Matthew has religiously woken me up between 5:30 and 6:00 every morning to ask me if today is the day that we are making our gingerbread houses. If I ever want to sleep in again, I better either lock my door or get those houses made.
While I was gathering my shopping list and constructing my "To Make" list from my Christmas recipe archives, I thought I would compose a roundup of our favorite Christmas recipes in case you are still searching for something special to make and bring to a Christmas gathering. Some of these posts are pretty old and feature some pretty terrible pictures, but the recipes are still awesome. Just keep in mind that everything tastes way better than it looks! Links are embedded in the title of each goodie and should take you right to the recipes. Happy Baking!