Christmas is just around the corner. While this is the most wonderful time of the year, it’s important to stay modest and rational. Sure, Christmas and gifts go like peanut butter and jelly. However, that doesn’t mean that you should go around spending thousands of dollars on gifts. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that you should skimp on gifts this year. After all, you don’t want to disappoint your family members. Continue reading
Don’t Forget To Feed Santa’s Hungry Reindeer On Christmas Eve!
Reindeer Food & Sparkles Lead Santa To Your Home
My kids have loved making reindeer food and sparkles every year to make sure Santa comes for Christmas! You KNOW his reindeer must get hungry! They fly all night. Santa gets all the cookies and milk but what about those hard-working reindeer? Well, here is the solution! Of course, it makes for fun memories your children will never forget AND some neat pics.
Plus, it is so simple. All you have to do is mix together oatmeal (food for those hungry reindeer) and glitter sparkles in the night to make sure they can see your house perfectly from way high up in the sky! Mix as much glitter into the oatmeal as your children like! The more the better (for picture purposes).
Now Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixon, Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitson…. but do YOU recall the most famous reindeer of all? RUDOLPH will LOVE some red sparkly glitter to match his red nose! Any color works but I bet red is his favorite!
Tell me, What is your favorite Christmas tradition?
Twas The Night Before Christmas WHAT?!
I Want to Know Where This Quiet House Is Located!
Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house… Ok, I would be lying if I finished that next part. What house is REALLY quiet on Christmas Eve? Surely not a home with kids! Not MY home!
For us, Christmas Eve, as well as all the days leading up to Christmas are pure chaos. Between parties, baking, Christmas gift buying, wrapping all the presents and just typical daily life, things can get pretty crazy around the Smith house! Anyone else’s house like this?
My idea is to get the kids in bed early on Christmas Eve so Santa can come but that NEVER happens! Last minute making and decorating cookies for Santa, sprinkling reindeer food out in the yard, and just the excitement from the anticipation of Christmas keeps our house hopping on Christmas Eve. Kids lay in bed the night before Christmas wiggling, tossing and turning because they are too excited to sleep.
Meanwhile, mom and dad are typically busy finishing up any last minute Christmas gift wrapping, eating Santa’s cookies, filling stockings and cleaning the house to make it picture perfect for Christmas morning. Why DO we clean before Christmas? I mean, the house gets trashed Christmas morning anyways from all the wrapping paper, boxes, tie straps and more from opening gifts. Oh, and don’t forget about the late night fight with the new toys. Yep, putting together new toys can be NO FUN! Even the English version of the instructions seems foreign to me!
Well, I say all that to say that Christmas Eve is crazy but I wouldn’t want it any other way. If it wasn’t crazy, it means we aren’t having fun! What keeps us so busy are our children and all the crazy fun traditions we have created over the years. My kids may never remember gifts they received (I know I hardly remember any gifts I ever got as a child even though I know I received more than enough!), but they will remember making cookies every Christmas for Santa (even though my oldest two don’t believe anymore they still love doing it). They will remember sprinkling reindeer food out on the grass. They will remember snuggling up to watch Christmas movies and seeing only crumbs left on Santa’s plate Christmas morning.
What traditions do you have with your family? Time flys way too fast to not enjoy these crazy moments. Take a deep breath and soak in every moment here even in the midst of the busiest season each year. It only happens once a year, so enjoy it! To think that I only have 18 Christmases with my babies at home makes me want to enjoy every single simple moment during this Christmas season! Don’t stress over the little stuff!
Merry Christmas All!
Make, Roll, Cut, Bake and Decorate – Easy No-Chill Sugar Cookies
No More Waiting 2 Hours to Roll and Cut Dough
I like to be able to start and finish everything on my to-do list, ESPECIALLY around Christmas when I feel like a mad woman trying to get everything done. I don’t have time to wait around after making the sugar cookie dough. Plus, I hate to take cold dough out of the fridge that is hard to roll. So, Why not make sugar cookies for Santa without the hassle!
Best Chill Free Sugar Cookies
- 1 Cup Unsalted Butter (softened)
- 1 Cup Granulated White Sugar
- 1 TSP Vanilla Extract
- 3/4 TSP Almond Extract
- 1 Egg
- 2 TSP Baking Powder
- 3 Cups All Purpose Flour
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
- Beat butter and sugar together for 3 minutes
- Add extracts and egg until well blended
- Add baking powder, mixing well
- Slowly add in flour allowing flour to mix evenly into dough (it will become pretty stiff so if you need to hand knead it, you can. Just make sure your hands are wet to keep from dough sticking)
- Roll on a floured surface to 1/4 inch and cut.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 6-8 minutes. Cool on cookie sheet until firm.
- Decorate and eat (Don’t forget to put some Santa’s plate!)
Memories Fade Over Time So Keep It Alive!
Make Next Christmas Extra Special
Each year, I feel like some of my memories from childhood fade. I am 35 now which isn’t very old but I can feel those memories that use to be so alive, fading from year to year. Sometimes I wish I could just think back to a certain time in my life, a certain Christmas memory or maybe a special program I was in at school. I want to not only soak up the moment but make it an awesome memory for years to come!
As I was thinking about packing up the decorations, I got a little sad. It means yet another year has come and gone. Memories made this year will one day fade and new ones will be created. I try documenting a lot through pictures but have never been good about keeping a diary. I wish I was better at that kind of stuff! As I was thinking about packing everything up, I came up with an idea that got me excited about packing it all away.
This year, I am going to have everyone in my family write down memories they have from this past year. Maybe some silly conversation or a sweet moment. Maybe something super simple that just meant the world to us. A certain gift given that we don’t ever want to forget about or a good deed someone did for us.
After each person writes as much or as little as they would like (or a drawing for my youngest who can’t write yet), we will put our letters in a sealed envelope. As we pack up the decorations, I am going to place the envelopes all together inside the decorations box. Next year, as we get ready to decorate (which has always been a special family time for us as a family), we can open those letters and read them out loud. It will allow us to see the great memories of 2016 and help it not to fade as 2017 is coming to a close. Each year will be a surprise not knowing what everyone else wrote down about their favorite times.
I will hold each letter from year to year in a special box. As my children grow older and have a family of their own, I can give them a special book full of THEIR OWN memories from each year. How awesome would that be? I can’t wait to see what memories we can make in 2017! Who’s with me on this?