As for me I wanted to get inspired for this Christmas. Yes, I am one of those annoying people who start in September. My goal is to be done with everything but the baking before Thanksgiving. I know it sounds crazy to most of you, but I do this so that I can Enjoy the holidays, instead of running around crazy, stressed and very grumpy. Shopping is not my most favorite thing to do, so you can see why I don't have any desire to be at the mall at 5:00 am with 5 million other people. This would be me...
(borrowed from pearlsoftruth.wordpress.com)
Ok, so here are some of my favorite things about Christmas, and hopefully you will take away a few good ideas to use on your own Christmas.
I love the lights, decorations and all around ambiance that the tree gives a room. I use a fake tree, and have since having kids, so they don't eat the needles or scream when they see a spider, but that's just me!Here are my two oldest in front of our tree.
I use the same theme each year, but add something new. So The snowflakes are from our first Christmas 16 years ago. The reindeer ornaments I made by hand one year, and the snow angel is from a craft bazaar I went to at my good friends Grandfather's farm. So many memories are attached to each item on the tree. My theme is always based on red.
Here are some adorable trees that I found while out searching for fun Christmas stuff. I just love the snowmen.
I thought this one was so elegant, and I just love the carolers in front.
We also love O Holy Night by Martina McBride, and Christmas Cookies by George Strait. It wouldn't be Christmas without all the great music.
I love stockings! I love all the different kinds of stockings, because each one has such a unique personality. I ran across this super cute and easy idea from the Queen of crafts Martha Stewart. These adorable Scarf Stockings are so cute, and there is even a template to make the project easy. Love that Martha Stewart. I searched hi and low for pictures of our stockings but couldn't find any. That will give you something to look forward to in December.
I love the sound of a train whistle going around the tree. I love that my boys come running from the other side of the house when I turn it on. I even love the smell of burning oil as it chugs around the track.
What would Christmas be without the cat napping next to the train after a long hard morning of playing with Christmas wrap. We got this train from Orvis a few years ago. It was the best price train that I could find at the time. It has held up well even with boys and cats.
I love to bake goodies at Christmas time. All the Girls in our family get together and have a mass baking day. It is so much fun. We get to chat, bake and of course eat. It is such a great tradition that I hope to pass on with my daughter one day. Here are a couple of my absolute, can't live without, Christmas goody recipes.
These are a lovely little cookie my Great-Grandmother used to make and send to our house each year. They were the first to go, because my entire family loved them. I still use the handwritten recipe she gave to me years ago.
1/3 c. whipping cream
2 c. flour
Creamy Frosting(see below)
Mix thoroughly butter, cream and flour. Cover and chill for 1 hour. Heat oven to 375. Roll out 1/3 of dough at a time 1/8" thick. Cut into 1 1/2 inch circles. Transfer rounds to piece of wax paper that is heavily covered with sugar. Turn each round so both sides are coated with sugar. Place on ungreased baking sheet-prick with for 4 times. Bake 7 to 9 minutes or just until set, but not brown; cool. Put cookies into pairs with creamy filling. Enjoy!
1/4 c. soft butter
3/4 c. Confectioners sugar
1 t. mint extract
Cream together until smooth and fluffy.(I usually double this recipe to make enough for everyone to enjoy)
This recipe if from the Quick Cooking magazine. I love this magazine because everything is easy and yummy. This recipe if from Janice Brightwell of Jeffersonville, Indiana. It is a yummy one that I look forward to all year long!
Crunchy Peanut Butter Balls
1c. peanut better
1 jar marshmallow creme
1 1/2 c. rice crispy cereal
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips (I use milk chocolate)
4 t. shortening
In a large bowl, combine the peanut butter and marshmallow creme; add cereal and stir until well coated. In a small bowl combine chocolate chips and shortening. Microwave for 1 to 2 minutes or until chips are melted. Stir until smooth. Roll cereal mixture into 1" balls; dip in chocolate. Place on waxed paper. Refrigerate until set. (Again I double this recipe, because they are my favorite)
This is how they look in the magazine...
...and this is how they look when we do them. I am sure they all taste the same!
What would Christmas be without snow. We don't always have it, but when we do, it makes this so much more magical. Snow makes the world so quiet and peaceful.
I love that the world becomes a little more soft, and a little more kind. We all look at little harder to make someones life a little better. That is what the season is truly about, being and example of Christ. Merry Christmas in July!