Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas, cookies, softball, and blackjack.

My cookies
I spent over 10 hours in the kitchen baking cookies the week before Christmas. We take cookies to work every year as a thank you. I made at least 12 different kinds of cookies and candies that day. Christmas Eve I made another 5 varieties. I'm officially sick of cookies.
My favorite recipe for these big batches is from Real Simple Magazine. The Cookie Base Recipe makes 6 different cookies. I change it up some more to by adding different ingredients to the chocolate chip dough. But my favorites out those are the Gingersnaps and White Chocolate Snowballs. Everyone goes always goes crazy over those two.
The absolute finishing touch on the Gingersnaps is a Snow Dream Ball.
You take 8 ounces of cream cheese and mix in 5 cups of confectioners sugar.
Mix in 1/2 cup of coconut.
Form into a cheese ball.
Press remaining coconut onto the outside of the ball.
It looks just like a coconut snowball. I serve it on my Hallmark Snowman cheese ball plate. Very cute, too bad I didn't snap a picture. You can spread it on crackers or cookies.

Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree

This is our 4.5 foot tree that we put on top of a table to cheat on the height. From outside the window it looks like a full size tree. But the size is perfect for us since we live in a small town house. I would love to have a full size tree but it's really not practical right now. I have ornaments from my childhood on there which is a lot of fun to get out each year. The newest ornament came from my friend, Stephanie. She got me an angel ornament in memory of the babies that I lost this year. The saying matches the angel statue that I bought. I need to take a close up of it. Perfect gift. Thanks again, Stephanie!

Christmas morning we host breakfast for the misfits. It's the third year running. All the adults that live by themselves come over to our house so they don't spend the day alone. It's nice and Chris does 90% of the cooking. I just set a pretty table with all my Christmas finery and pass around cookies.

We had Christmas dinner at BIL's. We played softball for a while before dinner. South Florida makes for interesting holidays. It was a nice day out, not too hot. It was really just us taking turns hitting pitches. No one ran bases or anything.
We had a traditional menu, but my baked macaroni and cheese was a big hit. There weren't any leftovers!

After dinner, everyone opened gifts. Well, mostly we all watched the twin 5 year olds open gifts. They got some nice loot. My favorite SIL got me a lovely bracelet and some dangling earings. She knows my taste so well!

After that, the guys played blackjack. Chris has a professional casino kit with a real felt pad for the table, chips and everything. They played nicely together. The brothers and cousins are so competitive! Chris lost a few dollars overall. And Cousin Al was the big winner. He did cough up $5 for gas and toll money since he rode with us. What a guy! ;)

I guess that sounds bad to be gambling on Christmas?

We actually haven't opened up our presents yet. We each got ipods. And I know he got me a laptop backpack. Our morning was too busy taking care of breakfast for our guests.


Will they have his eyes? said...

That sounds like a wonderful Christmas! And your tree is beautiful :-)

Stephanie said...

I'm so glad you liked the ornament! Your tree is beautiful!