35 Days of Celebration: 14-18

35 Days of Celebration: Days 14-18Holiday GoodiesI’ve been baking at least one holiday goodie a day all weekend, actually, since Wednesday. Rather seems like the thing to do this time of year, although I don’t really need all these lying about the house. Which is why most of them have been (or are being) put in the freezer for prolonged keeping. It will be nice already having a variety of sweets ready for various holiday functions. Likewise, I can pull one out for dessert should I desire, while not having them ready to eat at a moments notice. Should keep me from binging on all of them at once. Fingers crossed. I’ve remade Grinch Cookies and Trix Krispies as well as adding a couple new recipes: Nutella-Cranberry White Chocolate Chip Cookies and Kringla, and then the traditional sugar cookies.

Grinch Cookies
Ingredients:

  • 1 pouch (1 lb 1.5 oz) sugar cookie mix
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon mint extract
  • 8 drops green food color
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup mint baking chips
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees
  2. In large bowl, stir cookie mix, butter, extract, food color and egg until soft dough forms. Stir in both mint and chocolate chips.
  3. Using small spoons (teaspoons, drop dough 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet.
  4. Bake 8-10 minutes or until set.
  5. Remove from oven and cool.

Trix Krispies
Ingredients:

  • 1 x 400g bag of mini marshmallows
  • 10 cups Trix cereal
  • 1/4 cup butter

Directions:

  1. Place the butter and marshmallows in a glass bowl and pop in the microwave for about 2 to 3 minutes to melt.
  2. Stir well.
  3. Mix in your trix and stir.
  4. Pour into a large greased pan (9 x 13 or 11 x 11) and press down with a spoon.
  5. Cut into squares.

Nutella-Cranberry White Chocolate Chip Cookies
Ingredients:

  • 2 sticks butter, soft
  • 1/2 cup Nutella
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 bag (12-ounces) white chocolate chips, divided
  • 1 bag (5-ounces) dried cranberries, divided

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Prepare a cookie sheet and set aside. Do not grease.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine butter and Nutella; mix until creamy.
  • Add light brown sugar, sugar, and baking soda; continue to beat until combined.
  • Beat in eggs, one at a time.
  • Add vanilla and continue to mix until thoroughly combined.
  • Add flour in batches; beat each batch until combined. You may have to stir in the last batch of flour.
  • Stir in 1/2-bag of white chocolate chips and 1/2 bag of dried cranberries.
  • Drop by rounded spoons on prepared cookie sheets, 2 inches apart.
  • Bake for 9 to 11 minutes, or until edges are just browned.
  • Cool on cookie sheets for 2 minutes then transfer to wire rack.
  • Decorate with the rest of the white chocolate chips and dried cranberries as they cool.
  • Cool completely.
  • Serve.

Kringla
Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup margarine
  • 2 eggs
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. baking powder

Directions:

  1. Cream sugar and margarine until smooth.
  2. Add eggs and sour cream.
  3. Sift flour, baking soda and baking powder. Stir Well
  4. Let cool overnight.
  5. Shape in figure 8’s and bake at 375 until done

Until next time
~ Q

35 Days of Celebration 01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 & 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 16 | 17

35 Days of Celebration: 17

35 Days of Celebration: Day 17Today was a lovely day. I spent a good deal of time with my sister Bailey. Together we headed to Des Moines for dinner and a show, nothing says ‘holiday spirit’ like Zombie Burger – right? Only joking, however the show we went to was very holiday! Luckily White Christmas has been in Des Moines the past two weeks and we went to the matinee this afternoon. It was difficult, at first, to not constantly compare it to the classic movie. However in the end I reminded myself that, like books turned to movies, they are two separate forms and to treat them as such.

Shoo with your pointy heads. Why are you always under boot?― North

North and I have similar ‘problems,’ elves are his; a cat with an affinity for cuddling with feet, while they are walking, is mine.

White Christmas GuardiansWhen I returned home for the evening I painted a bit of the basement. I also prepped some kringla, tomorrow I plan to see if making the Scandinavian treat is inherently in my blood or not. I rounded out the evening relaxing while I watched Rise of the Guardians. Now the movie takes place a few days before Easter, but since Santa, aka North, is such a central character it’s easy to think of it as a holiday movie. Perhaps all movies with Jack Frost just seem to be holiday movies, despite the fact they take place in the late winter/early spring. Now matter the reason, it was a calming and good way to end a great day.

Until next time
~ Q

35 Days of Celebration 01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 & 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 16

Thirty Day Challenge: Day Nineteen

Day Nineteen: Five Items You Lust After

Lust is not one of my primary or secondary or tertiary emotions. However 5 ‘wouldn’t it be nice ifs’ are:

  1. I had the resources to travel abroad and visit all the places on my list. Seriously, I once made a list, there were over 50 places on it. I gave up on the list once I saw how improbable it was.
  2. I had the follow through and focus to write a story (forgetting, entirely, the ability to write)
  3. I took the time to read all the books I have in my house, rather than staring at them so much
  4. I took the time to listen to all the audiobooks I have on my iPod
  5. I actually created the artwork I intend to (ignoring my technique and style is fairly juvenile)

At least these are manageable things, if I’d simply cross over from the world to planning into the world of acting. It’ll be a long winter, I just might be able to knock a few of these off. Wouldn’t that be nice?

You can’t plow a field simply by turning it over in your mind.―Gordon B. Hinckley

Until next time ~Q

Previous 30 Day Challenge Posts: Five Ways To Win My Heart | Something I Feel Strongly About | A Book I Love | Bullet Your Whole Day | Things You Want to Say to an Ex | Your Views on Mainstream Music | Pet Peeves | What I Ate Today | How Important I Think Education Is | Put Your Music Player On Shuffle & Write The First Ten Songs That Play | Your Family / Five Guys Whom You Find Attractive / Your Body & How Comfortable You Feel In It / What You Wore Today | What’s my zodiac/horoscope and does it fit my personality | Something You Always Think “What If…” About | Something That You’re Proud Of | A Problem That You Have Had

35 Days of Celebration: 16

35 Days of Celebration: Day 16Tonight’s dinner was food that was red or green (and white for good measure). I was thinking of making it a red and green food themed day, but that didn’t go according to plan. Why you may ask? Oh, that would d be because I decided to go the midnight showing of the hobbit. That somewhat upset my timeline for the day. Of course, I’d do it again in a second, disruption and all. Red & GreenAnyway I slept in late, not leaving me enough time to make the imagined red velvet pancakes for breakfast. Lunch was going to be salad, but then I ended up napping instead. This brings me to supper, which I ate way to much of. Spinach salad with raspberry vinaigrette dressing and parmesan cheese, veggie farfalle with pesto sauce, and green crystal-lite (martini & margarita mock-tales mixed). It was my first time making pesto and it was quite lovely.

Until next time
~ Q

35 Days of Celebration 01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 & 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13

Thirty Day Challenge: Day Eighteen

Day Eighteen: A Problem That You Have Had

A problem I have had, and continue to have, is hording tendencies. However my hording is fairly specific. I horde paper. In my project room I have a tub full of scrap-booking paper (I’m not a scrap-booker) that I just can’t find it in me to use because it’s too pretty. Right? I wont use the paper I used to make fun and cute envelopes because I like how it looks too much. I also horde postcard that I got to ‘someday send’. The real problem is I got these when I was snail-mailing my friends regularly and I have since stopped that. Not sure why. Perhaps one of my resolutions this year will be to write 1 letter each month (at least). That way I can start fixing this surplus paper problem.

I wove this together with 1/4" strips of paper. Seriously, I may be crazy because after all that work I haven't been able to part with it. IT'S AN ENVELOPE!

I wove this together with 1/4″ strips of paper. Seriously, I may be crazy because after all that work I haven’t been able to part with it. IT’S AN ENVELOPE!I wove this together with 1/4″ strips of paper. Seriously, I may be crazy because after all that work I haven’t been able to part with it. IT’S AN ENVELOPE!

Thirty Day Challenge: Day Seventeen

Day Seventeen: Something That You’re Proud Of

I’m proud of my independence, or rather my self-sufficient nature. Actually, neither of those feel like the right sentiment. I’m proud for taking a risk. This year I did something that that was unprecedented in my family. I bought a house. Now you may be thinking, “Big deal, people by houses all the time.” Keyword: people. Thinking it through, my mom was married before she could even toast her own marriage and my grandmother definitely wouldn’t have considered buying a house on her own. Not because she couldn’t manage it, she raised three kids under the age of three, she could manage/do anything. It was just very much beyond the social norm. So, I guess I’m proud of myself for taking the risk. Taking on such a huge responsibility, that is usually shared between two people at least, and accepting it as my own.

When I was making the decision did these things occur to me, ever? Of course not. However, as I do the day-to-day stuff, like this morning when I woke up at 5:30 so I could shovel the drive way without being late to work, it hits home a little bit more. I am crazy. Oh wait, no, not that, I am independent – a trail blazer. Not in anyway that will matter to anyone else, but that’s not the point. The point is that for once, I didn’t let social conventions or fear dictate my decisions. I took, and am taking, a giant risk and so far, so far it’s working out.

Now, lest you get the fool hardy notion, that this post is somewhat suggesting, I have not been alone on this crusade. My parents, who live about ten minutes away, and their support have been a major factor in why I have succeeded. They come over on average once a week to help me finish my basement, a project I could never have done on my own (we’re doing most of the work ourselves). Also, as I mentioned in another post, they came over Sunday to help me shovel that particular storm, making the usual hour-long endeavor only about 20 minutes. So, although I may be the only name on the deed, this isn’t really a solo mission. I have plenty of support in the wings and that is a major comfort.

Anything’s possible, if you’ve got enough nerve.J.K. Rowling

35 Days of Celebration: 13

35 Days of Celebration: Day 13CardsI have no idea when I became a ‘send out Christmas Cards’ person. Well, I do, last year I believe I sent them out for the first time. I just don’t know how. Not that it matters much, I thoroughly enjoy doing it. Deciding what form the card will take is half the fun. I’m a nerd, but that’s okay.

Today I finished up the letter, the design, got them printed, cut, scored, stamped and stickered shut. All there is to do now is wait for the morning when I will drop them in the post. I think part of the reason I enjoy Christmas cards so much is through my process of creating my cards, I always look over the past year. Doing that, it’s easy to see that I have been very blessed this year. To some I may have a simple life, and that’s okay. It’s my life and not theirs, and I truly cherish the people that have been in my life this year and the experiences I had. Sappy? A bit, but again, that’s okay.

Until next time
~ Q

35 Days of Celebration 01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 & 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12