Leading up to Christmas

I had an epiphany the other day… They want to call it a holiday tree so that it is less offensive. Well holiday is all inclusive: Christmas, New Years, 4th of July, Valentine’s Day, etc… So does that mean we get to leave our Holiday trees up all year round? Just a thought…..

In other news…. So a lot of people won’t put up Christmas trees with toddlers around. Say it’s too much of a hassle or an inconvenience. I don’t agree. I think it helps teach them to love the season and respect the season and learn patience, which sometimes I still need to learn… just saying. I’m happy to report we only had one casualty when it came to Christmas presents. Abug got sooooo darn excited that Thursday of last week she opened a present. I laughed so hard because she was so proud of herself. It happened to be my present from my parents and I also knew what it was. No harm, no foul, but next time, open something I don’t know what it is so I don’t have to wait so long to know, okay kid 😂😜.

I also learned, don’t let Grandpa babysit. haha… just kidding. One day last week Abug needed a nap so I put her down around 4 or so (that’s when she finally went to sleep). Around 6 I went and woke her up so that she’d be ready for bed come that night… Well she went down stairs and sat with grandpa so she’d quit crying. I walked in to check on them and they both decided to take a snooze. Hmm….

Abug spent a lot of the Christmas season helping me wrap presents, filling out name tags, and at times, testing my patience. See, I need to learn that patience thing! I had an absolute blast though having her help me every step of the way!

It finally became time to decorate Christmas cookies. Every year I try to make up some kind of goody plates for people as a thank you for the year. This year I went to my new found hobby of decorated sugar cookies. I spent most of last week baking and decorating sugar cookies. I baked off 152 sugar cookies and when it was all said and done I decorated 132 sugar cookies. Some I started decorating and got mad because they didn’t look right. Others had a cookie thief come in and snag a couple. It was all good and I had fun though so that’s what matters, right?

Our friend Grady had to have open heart surgery last Monday. By Wednesday he was in a regular room and we were able to take Abug over to see him. After we left the hospital, we met up with our friend Carlene because she had a gift for Abug. She and Dan got Abug her very own baking utensils to help mommy in the kitchen.

As Abug was opening presents, she’d tear a small strip of paper off at a time. We were scared that was a preview as to how painful Christmas Eve/Day would be opening presents. I’ll have you know though, she was a pro come Christmas Eve. Last year at Christmas she had system overload and shut down and refused to open anymore. This year she had a ball opening presents!

Friday morning hubby and I woke up around 7am. I looked at him and said, think we should go to the store now to get groceries? If we don’t, it’ll be a MAD house come this afternoon (when mom had plans to go….). We were happy with our choice of early morning grocery shopping!

When we got back, I finished getting myself dressed and we got Abug dressed. Mom, Abug, and I had a girls date with my aunt to get pedicures.

We went and picked AC up and headed off to get pedicures. This was Abug’s first and she was so darn excited she could hardly stand herself. Once the lady was finished with the foot massage portion of AC’s and went to paint her nails, Abug looked at AC and said, “Get up, it’s my turn.” Poor kid had to wait until last, but at the same time she got the royal treatment. After her nails were done, they painted her finger nails too.

She chose purple for her color which was a shock because she likes Pink. She went around the rest of the day bragging to everyone about her purple fingers and toes. The kid was so excited!

We came home that night and started prepping for Christmas Eve dinner. We had to because we had a busy Christmas Eve day ahead of us.

At one point I needed some room temperature butter but had run out (didn’t get out enough) so I went and stood in front of the blowers on the fireplace with the butter to help quickly warm up the butter. It might have worked, it might not have, but usually in the winter that’s where you find me standing anyway so it was all good.

Earlier this year I saw a cake going around Facebook called a Cranberry Christmas Cake. I personally like Cranberries so I thought it looked good and sounded tasty so I got the recipe and decided to make that for dessert. Okay, opinion time… I loved it. Not everyone in my family did… maybe you have to like cranberries? If nothing else, it was pretty! We got some Häagen Dazs ice cream for the topping since it didn’t have any icing or anything. Hubby liked the ice cream so much he stole one of the containers and the spoon mom was dishing it up with and ran off. Mom looked down to dish up more and it wasn’t there. That should have been a story for the Christmas Eve post but it was just too funny.

So while I was working on the Garlic Toast I was reading Cooks Illustrated magazine that came in the mail on Friday. I noticed 2 things… Grad school screws up your ability to read for fun, I was underlining and taking notes while I was reading, and 2) I was so tired the underlining was helping me stay awake. I finally got done with the garlic toast around 10:30 or so and made it to bed by 11.

And one last thought to laugh at me about. I told you I was tired. My roll recipe is from one of this year’s Southern Living magazines. You make the dough up the night before and let it sit in the refrigerator 8 hours to over night. So while the garlic toast was doing its thing, I started working on the bread. (btw, no one hardly ate any of the garlic toast… bummer) I put the 1/2 cup water in a 2 cup measurer, added the 1/4 tsp sugar, and the 2 1/2 tsps of yeast. It was supposed to sit for 5 minutes. I kind of forgot I started that, went and sat down, and about 20 minutes later my mom said, what’s in the bowl? I was like I don’t know what you’re talking about. I walked over, looked, and laughed my butt off. I realized I forgot about my bread start and decided I should start again.

And that was my lead up to Christmas.

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