Sunday, December 23, 2007

Sweet Treats

This is the gingerbread house we made last weekend. We used a kit that I bought at Costco. It comes with a nifty tray that made house construction so easy! The kids were so proud of themselves

I love baking and the holidays are the perfect time for it. Something about the smell of cookies in the oven and hot spiced cider on the stove brings a smile to my face and my stomach.

Last year, I really dropped the ball on baking due to the book deadline. Oh, we sort of baked, thanks to Pillsbury ready made cookies that just needed to be rolled in candy sprinkes and colored sugars.

This year, with no deadline looming, I wanted it to be different, more like my childhood where we would go to our friends' Peggy's house and spend the day making cookies. She was our pseudo-grandmother who we spent every Christmas Eve with until we moved away when I was in fifth grade. She was also the one who kept me when my sister was born. Peggy created such fond childhood Christmas memories for me as well as gave me the fudge recipe that I won the Arizona State Fair with. She's no longer with us, but I'm sure she was smiling down at the mess in my kitchen last night, thinking it serves me right for all the times my sister and I messed up her kitchen!

Last night, we started our holiday baking. On the agenda, sugar, gingerbread and chocolate chip cookies. I was going to make all the cookies from scratch but at the last minute decided to use my good friends, Pillsbury and Nestle, pre-made sugar and gingerbread dough instead. I realized it was the decorating that was the real fun, not the cookies themselves. And as you can see, I hope Santa likes frosting! The kids and hubby went a little overboard. While they finished decorating cookies, I baked chocolate chip cookies, using the Nestle Tollhouse recipe. On today's agenda, grocery shopping and more baking-oatmeal cookies and fudge. What are your favorite goodies to make this time of year?

And here's a sweet treat just for you. The Climbing Cutie. Since I can only share my holiday baking with you virtually, I wanted to at least give you a little eye candy to enjoy. I was going to put together a 2008 Climbing Cutie calendar, but he said if I did that he'd make sure I met Mr. Pukie if we ever did a Crossfit workout together. Since I do want to workout with him, these photos will have to do.

The pictures are from a recent ice climbing trip the Climbing Cutie took to Montana and Wyoming. The trip sounded fantastic and his smile shows just what a sweet time it must have been.

Hope you have a great day! Good luck finishing up your holiday preparations!

P.S. I'll do the free book winner later. I need to get going right now!


Tori Lennox said...

Love the pictures! Both the cookies and Climbing Cutie. :)

Marianne Arkins said...

Yum... cookies... I baked today, too. Three kinds of cookies (I don't like sugar cookies or gingerbread, so none of those!), and two kinds of fudge. I think I'm finally tired of chocolate.

Until tomorrow.

Poor CC... bet he had NO idea what he was getting into when he worked with you. *G*

Brandy said...

Ooh, I saw the word frosting! *G* I made chocolate chip cookies last night as well. Son begged and begged for them and has eaten ONE.

Climbing Cutie looks like he has a great time! Good for him!

Enjoy your sunday! (And the spoils of all that baking! *G*)

Kimberly L said...

Gingerbread house looks so cute and the cookies looks delicious. Merry Christmas!!!!!

Melissa said...

Thanks Tori!

Yeah, Marianne, I'm sure Climbing Cutie had no idea what he was in for, but he's a really good sport about it. If he ever said to stop, I would. Two types of fudge? I'm impressed!

Haha Brandy. We are frost-aholics aren't we!! I'm totally loving the chocolate chip cookies. Hope your son eats more.

Thanks, Kimberly. Marry Christmas to you!

Dru said...

Yummy pictures and yeah, that includes Climbing Cutie.

Melissa said...

Thanks Dru.

I got an email from CC today. Here's what he said, "Tell everyone I said hi and merry xmas"