The pictures are really for those of you not here, like my Texas friend spending her holiday in California.
Although I miss the special cookies of my childhood and the fancy cookies I made before kids, I am enjoying the wonders of cookie dough in a tube and frosting in a can. These two things made cookie making happen in my house this year. There are just enough cookies to feel like we're having a treat but not so many that anyone is having insulin shock. There were enough to decorate and frost to keep it fun and not so many to drive everyone into frustration. The best part might have been that when it was all over I had just a few things to wash and a few things to throw away. I wasn't bogged down under ingredients and mixing bowls and measuring cups and all that other stuff.
Now those of you that know me well may remember my time in the kitchen. You may have even eaten some of all the homemade things that came out of my kitchen. There was my year of Titus treats and coffee cakes. My family really enjoyed eating the experiments that year. The braided bread I made in my life before kids. Maybe you've been to my house for a pasta night. Anyway, it isn't that I've given up my love of all things kitchen and cooking, not at all. It's the opposite really. I want to keep my kitchen time a happy thing in my mind and heart, so in my life full of kids, that means keep it really simple and speedy. Keep it fun for the kids and build the memories. I'll get back to the complex food later.
Dollar stores are a blessing. They are some of my least favorite places to go, but suddenly being a family of six this year, we were in serious need of basics like Christmas stockings. It was also a great place to stock up gift wrap, tags and bows.
Gift wrapping tips for kids: When in doubt, use more tape.
The best way to see the snow falling is by sitting in front of the fireplace and watching it out the window.
Watch the movies. Break out the blankets. Give in and order out. Stay up, sleep in. Eat some treats.
Enjoy the giving.
Smile while you shop.
Laugh while you shop.
Read. Sip. Read more. Snooze. Read some more.
Decide it's OK to smirk at your very manly neighbor walking his daughters little mini-dog in her pink doggie sweater.
The Littlest Mr. dodged a bullet yesterday. Our snow in the front yard is now piled up somewhere between waist and shoulder high on me. Now, I'm around 5 feet tall, so that isn't real high, but if you're 6 & 10, that's pretty great. Their bright plan was to jump down from the climbing tree into the snow banks. I think it probably was fun for a while. While I'm sitting inside with Little Miss and Little One I hear screaming. Lots of screaming. I first thought they were playing. Then I thought they were fighting. Either way, I thought I'd let them handle it. Then something about the screaming made me go to the door. There was The Littlest Mr. dangling from the tree. I thought he was hanging there because his boot fell off. I went out to help him and then it became like an episode of the Three Stooges. I stepped out into the snow to help him and sunk in up past my butt. Then I got a hold of him and told him to let go. Meanwhile, he's still shrieking. This is when I realized he's not holding on to the tree. He is hanging by his wrist which is caught in the crook of one of the branches.
No wonder he's screaming like a wild cat caught in a trap. His whole body weight plus wet snow gear is hanging from one wrist. To get him out, I had to lift him up. Once his arm was out, we fell over into the snow. But remember, this is snow up past my waist. Putting my arms down to help myself get up just put me even deeper into the snow. By this time The Mr. is helping to pull us both out of the snow.
He is a very resilient little man. We packed him up in ice last night and checked him over again this morning. There seems to be no more damage than a few scrapes and bruises, a few sore muscles and a healthy respect for the climbing tree and snow banks. His mama, on the other hand, has had enough trauma drama for the whole holiday season.
There is a week yet to go, and I'm going to keep repeating my holiday mantra. Please play safe, I don't want anyone to break a bone before the holiday.
And no, it won't be OK with me to break a bone after the holiday either, but it's just the thing I say.
Lady Dog is getting used to being on bed rest and seems to be having a great recovery.