Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Back to Baking!

It must have been not having a kitchen for so many months during our renovation that really sparked my holiday baking bug this year.  I made NINE different things including a few favorites and plenty of new recipes.

Everyone's absolute favorite: chewy ginger cookies.

Peppermint candy cane cookies.  Not my best work, but it was fun trying something new.

Another new one: cherry rugelach.  Filling was way too sweet for me but I have now perfected making and rolling the dough, so that's a win.

I love using my grandmother's cookie press!  This year I tried a new recipe for pistachio Spritz cookies.

No year is complete without some kind of crinkle cookie.  I've done chocolate, red velvet, key lime, but these - lemon - are the BEST!

I haven't made cake pops in forever!

Every year I use a different cookie cutter for my sugar cookies and try to figure out a relatively simple and efficient way to ice them that still looks impressive.   These sparkly red nosed reindeer turned out really cute!

All of Brent's coworkers get a box full of treats.

There's plenty left over for friends, family, and Santa.  Nestled in there but not pictured separately are also Mexican hot chocolate cookies and "confetti" cookies with holiday color sprinkles.

One thing I never make is a gingerbread house.  For that, we rely on our amazing friends, Mallory and David, who host one of the most amazing and memorable parties every year for 30+ families.  It's absolutely the one Joseph looks forward to the most.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Holiday Card 2017

This was almost the year without a holiday card (gasp!).  The stars were not aligned for our photo shoot and we had to cancel due to rain.  Getting Joseph to cooperate was even more challenging than ever, but at the last minute I was able to drag him over to the Little Falls Trail for a few minutes to get some non-professional photos of my own (I'm guessing Brent secretly bribed him with something).  Then there was the impossible task of choosing a card before all the Cyber Monday deals expired - which actually didn't happen!  But thankfully many companies extended their deals into Tuesday.  For the first time ever I went rouge and did NOT order from Minted, Shutterfly, or Tiny Prints (gasp! LOL).  This simple, modern, foil-pressed card from Paper Source was the winner.

These were my best photos options.  PS, JT is actually wearing MY sweater, he's getting that big!

Whether you received a card from us or not, we wish everyone a joyous and safe holiday season! XOXO

Saturday, December 23, 2017

One Tall Tree

Joseph was somewhat surprisingly opinionated when it came to finding our Christmas tree this year.  He really wanted to be the one that chose it, and he sure picked one tall drink of water.

He was also quite helpful when it came to bringing the tree in and taking good care of it.

This tree was so tall that we had to chop a good 6-8" off the top branch just to get it to not touch the ceiling, and then a little more to be able to get the star on top!

Joseph make a great choice - it's such a beautiful tree!  Especially with our newest ornament commemorating my 50th birthday trip to see Hamilton.  After decorating the fireplace too, our house is all ready for the holiday season!

Friday, December 22, 2017

First Snow!

About 2 weeks ago, and on a weekend to enjoy it!
Not much, but it was perfect for snowballs!

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Carl and the City

My BFF Lance, who lives all the way across the country in San Francisco, was coming to New York for a conference last month with our mutual friend Stephanie and asked me to join them in the city.  I splurged on a business class train ticket from our gorgeous Union Station since Lance's company was paying for the hotel in Times Square.

Leading up to the trip I asked Lance if he would humor me in doing a few things that I've always wanted to do, and he agreed to all of them immediately.  We're best friends for a reason!

#1: stalk Carrie Bradshaw's apartment from Sex and the City

#2: check out Gotham Quilts (yes, we both quilt), and "make it work" at Mood Fabrics since we're both Project Runway fans (Lance even got a swatch!)

#3: Please please please please please can we see Miss Saigan?  It was shockingly my first time ever!

The rest of the time I was happy to do whatever.  One day we walked the High Line,

and another we had pizza in Brooklyn and then walked back over the Brooklyn Bridge.

Such an action packed, awesomely fun weekend with friends in the city!