Tag Archives: nutcracker

Crunch Time

Well, the last of our December weekend commitments have taken place and now I need to focus on baking, wrapping, delivering and enjoying.

Elliott had her Winter dance recital yesterday afternoon and we went to see The Nutcracker last night. This was our second year attending and I can tell that it would be something that I’d be so sad to miss each year. I love starting new traditions….thanks again Gramma for starting this special holiday habit!

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{post recital}

Elliott did a jazz/hip hop number to a spunky Jingle Bells tune. Gramma and I were the backstage mamas for the show and had 20 6-9 year olds to account for. Fortunately they are a little more self sufficient than the 4-6 year olds we attended to last year! Our girls danced 22nd so there was a lot of waiting around before they hit the stage. They did so well, though, and Elliott already has her trophy sitting proudly up on her desk surrounded by the others.

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{just a walkway was between us and the stage!}

Yesterday was Elliott’s special day and this morning we got to see Holden and his fellow 5 year old Sunday School friends sing “Soon and Very Soon” this morning at the end of mass. So precious….

He presented us with a special ornament for the tree after class. We were thrilled to have his sweet shepherd face on our ornament this year since last year there was a mix up with the packages and we got some other little boy’s ornament and were never able to get our hands on his.

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{these are the ornaments that I will cherish forever}

After church we went to take this boy to get a haircut! It had been six months since his mop had seen scissors…

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Just in time for Santa’s visit in about a week.

I have been looking forward to baking this week, but it’s a short week as far as school is concerned as the kids’ last day is Wednesday! There are two class parties, one Religious Ed party, teacher gifts and school staff gifts I need to get ready so I decided to get a start on the baked goods this afternoon. I pinned these Oreo lumps of coal and whipped up a batch this afternoon. Easiest things ever….I will definitely be making another batch with some peppermint Jo Jo’s from Trader Joe’s tomorrow! I bagged up about 5 pieces per person which I think is plenty to go along with the peppermint sugar cookie bars I plan to make tomorrow.

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{one package Oreos, 5 cups mini marshmallows, 4 tbsp. butter…process the whole package of Oreos into a fine powder. melt the butter and marshmallows in a sauce pan until blended. mix the marshmallow mixture into the Oreo mixture and spread into an 8X8 dish lined with parchment and sprayed with Pam. let sit for 10-20 minutes before cutting}

It’s also Gaudete Sunday ~ the third Sunday of advent…

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{rejoice!}

While our three candles were burning bright, I tried another Pinterest recipe, Lasagna Soup. The weather cooperated and it was the perfect night for this soup…

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{stir the ricotta/parmesan mixture and basil into the soup for out-of-this-world flavor!}

I will definitely be making this again for Christmas Eve with some crusty bread on the side for dipping.

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I hope that you had a beautiful weekend doing all things holiday. I definitely stared at Elliott and Holden a lot and thanked God for giving them to us and bringing them home safely each day.

Prayers for Newtown and our broken world going up again tonight…..

Have a blessed week, friends!

XOXO

Like A Gingerbread Man With It’s Head Cut Off

Oh my.

It’s been 5 days since I’ve posted! Every day I plan on sitting down and doing so, but it just hasn’t happened.

My days have been filled with the following…

driving around to four stores looking for gingerbread syrup for some martinis…then it dawned on me that I could have just walked into Starbucks and possibly begged them to buy a {tall} gingerbread syrup. Then I visited every CVS in town tracking down some calendars. I tell you, once I get something in my head, there’s no stopping me.

making more of these with Caramel Kisses {delicious, but don’t press the m&m down too hard or you will have oozing caramel which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, just not as tidy for packaging them up nice and neat} and the Hugs {milk chocolate inside white chocolate with stripes ~ those turned out super cute! {you can see the salted caramel ones to the right ——-> under my Instagrams}

Our little ballerina partook in her fourth recital and Gramma and I had the {pleasure} of working backstage. Keeping track of a dozen tutu’d 4-6 year olds is no joke. This paranoid mom was doing a head count every 10 seconds when I wasn’t filling cups with goldfish or providing water refills, that is. I {think} I may prefer sitting in the audience cheering on my girl rather than stressing backstage and applying lipstick touch ups at the last minute, but she’d been wanting me to be a stage mom for some time and I most certainly didn’t want to let my little lady down. Thanks again, Gramma, for being on potty duty!

Also, thank you to Gramma for starting a beautiful new holiday tradition and treating to front row seats at our local production of The Nutcracker. I was amazed at all the beautiful young dancers….my goodness. My girl decided to wear her costume straight from her recital to the ballet ~ swapping her ballet slippers for some boots and adding in one {Fancy Nancy} coat…

Holden sang a very simplified version of {Soon And Very Soon} in church on Sunday ~ You Tube to come!

I hosted a little Merry Mama gift wrapping to-do where several gals came over armed with rolls of paper, rolls of tape, bags of gifts and lots of chit chat. This was where my gingerbread martinis were supposed to make an appearance, but honestly my girls were so busy wrapping they didn’t even notice! I served the Winter White Wine sangria, artichoke dip, cranberry meatballs and Christmas pasta salad {2 packages Buitoni spinach tortellini, one box small shells, 4 small tomatoes [chopped] and a whole bottle of Bernstein’s Light Fantastic Cheese Fantastico ~ cook both pastas [separately] according to package directions, add chopped tomatoes and then stir in the bottle of dressing…can be made the night before} along with my beloved Hershey pretzel snaps and See’s molasses chips for a little sweet somethin’.

My little Pinterest find came together for treats for Elliott’s classmates:

{I picked up a bulk bag at CVS and divided them up into cello bags, but later found them prepackaged in a box of 24 at Smart And Final which is the route that I will go for Holden next year}

I also literally threw together a frame and some glitter clothespins to hold thoughtful gift cards from the kids to E’s teacher ~ one Goodwill frame, a can of black gloss Rustoleum, some twine, a glue gun, some clothespins {thanks for lookin’ out, Lisa!} and a rainbow of glitter…

These frames are also perfect for displaying Christmas cards during the holidays or birthday invitations throughout the year. Just get yourself a frame and discard the graphic and glass, spray paint it if need-be, use your glue gun to string twine across the frame every 4 inches or so by pulling it tight and securing it with hot glue onto the back of the frame. Easy. For the clothespins, just brush some Elmer’s glue onto the pin with a foam brush, sprinkle on your glitter over a bowl, shake off excess and let dry. Easy.

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And that is where I’ve been, friends! I’ve missed you and hope to post more regularly now that the kids are both out of school and we’ll be having some LAZY mornings┬ádays while they’re on break.

Hallelujah!