Since we weren't going to my parents after church, I had Sunday coffee and rolls at my house before the chaos commenced. It was a nice relaxing time to sit and chat with my sisters. It was one of the only times I had a chance to sit for hours after that. We cleaned up and I started by mixing the spritz cookie dough, this way they would be baking while the kids decorated the sugar cookies I had already baked the day before. We love spritz cookies since they remind us of our grandma and the baking marathon she would do every year, keeping my grandfather up until sometimes 4 in the morning, waiting for her to be finished.
|Chelsea and my nephew decorating a tray of Christmas trees|
Then it was time to make the royal icing for the sugar cookies. For years we made decorated cookies with canned frosting and icing gels and they were impossible to take home. They never dried and would ruin all of the other cookies, until I found the royal icing recipe that changed everything! All it is is powdered sugar, an egg white and lemon juice! I then add food coloring to it, put it in little decorator's bottles and they're off! Eureka!
|Charlie and Chelsea hard at work.|
|Only half of the aftermath of cookie baking day...|
Pinterest is just an awful, evil invention. I have TOO many things I want to accomplish in the next week! Time to drag out the pen and paper and make a list of everything I need for Christmas Eve at my f-i-l's girlfriend's house, Christmas day at my house (which means appetizers, dinner, dessert and drinks for 9), and my family Christmas on the 30th. The kids LOVE it. Every year they get to celebrate (Read: open presents) Christmas THREE times! For me it's about 12 trips to the grocery, liquor and dollar store!! Happy days!
I will say this, though, even with all of the work and stress this season brings, I don't need to be reminded of how very blessed my entire family is to be happy and healthy and together to celebrate. We'll be thinking of all of the people that have been struck with tragedy these past few months- those who are still displaced due to Hurricane Sandy, either attempting to rebuild or left with nothing and needing to start over completely, and those 27 families in CT who are grieving the loss of their child or family member. We can only hope and pray that they are able to make it through the toughest times they'll ever experience so their loved one's light will shine on, even if snuffed out too soon.