Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Some Things You Need To Know About Why I'll Never Be Mistaken for Mrs. Fields

If you were driving by my house last night, you totally suck because you didn't stop by and say hi  you may have seen me cleaning out a can of condensed milk.  Perhaps I should be embarrassed by the fact that I was standing in front of my kitchen window licking the sweet nectar of Eagle Brand Condensed Milk directly out of the can (ok, I was actually licking it off a spatula, under the guise of cleaning it out to put in the recycling bin).  But I am not.  I may be embarrassed when none of my clothes fit in a few days from extra poundage, but not of those few minutes of my public display of affection for my culinary crack...
Hello Lover

This is my new Wilton Cookie Imprint Cookie Sheet.

I am underwhelmed by it.  It doesn't produce cookies as much as it does muffins.  If  needed cute muffins, I'd be really happy with this cookie sheet.  But, alas, I need cute cookies. Lots and lots of them.  This pan was a total fail in that area.

Sometimes, when recipes call for dough to be chilled for two hours, what it really means put it in a freezer for 18 days.  Apparently, chilling dough in the fridge for 48 hours isn't enough.  And then you end up with a crazy mess like this...

OK, I admit, this carnage probably would have happened to some extent even without dough that pretended to be super glue, adhering itself to the counter, my hands, my clothes.  Initially, I was going to make 20 dozen cookies.  All for a good cause (every year all the young, unaccompanied airmen on base get a dozen cookies.  It's to help them have a happier holiday- can you imagine being as young as 18 and being so far from home during the holidays??).  Then the non-stop cheesefest, AKA Hallmark Channel Christmas movies life got in the way and I got realistic and cut that number in half.  The cookies started coming out of the oven looking like this...

There must be some law of physics explaining why the sprinkles don't disperse evenly when baking although the dough was rolled and covered in its entirety prior to baking.

These cookies are sugar cookies, yet they are the color of gingersnaps.

Can you guess what those shapes are?  Who knew that the Hunchback of Notre Dame and a fat Snork were somehow Christmas related?

All I know is, I muddled through it...

After producing racks and racks of cookies, I hope that this is one of those times where it's the thought that counts more than looks.  And as a reward to myself, I finished up the evening with my favorite Christmas time snack, a Hello Dolly and a glass of milk.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Christmas, It's In the Cards

How is it already December?  It seems like only yesterday there were 35 people at our house feasting on turkey and dressing and celebrating Thanksgiving.

Of course since we are in day 336 of summer here, there is absolutely nothing climatic to indicate that Christmas will be here in just a little over three weeks.  Good thing there is the un-decorated tree in the corner, the ever-growing list of presents to purchase and ship, the 20 dozen cookies that must be baked before Tuesday to remind me that December 25 will be here before I know it.  But this year, unlike last year, I'm already feeling Christmas-y.  It could be because our calendar is filling up with all kinds of Christmas activities, or maybe because even though our house isn't decorated yet, everyone else's is.  But probably, the reason I am more into Christmas this year is because of the little guy.  Any time he sees anything Christmas related he says, "Merry Christmas."  In the candy aisle, it's "Merry Christmas candy,"  it's not just a Christmas tree, but a "Merry Christmas tree."  He walks around singing Jingle Bell Rock.  And to prove that he really does listen to me, he also talks about Jesus.  In his mind and vocabulary (as I hope it always stays) Jesus is synonymous with Christmas, the latter is rarely mentioned without the former.

I really hope that I am able to capture P's excitement of the season.  He doesn't need the weather to be colder to be excited.  He can tell that it is a magical season.  I want to share this first year of understanding Christmas with our family and friends.  One of the ways I know I can do this is by sending out Christmas cards (ok, who am I kidding, we all know that IF they even get sent they will probably be more like New Years or Mardi Gras cards).  But thanks to Shutterfly, no matter when I get a picture or get ready to send out my cards, I will have so many great options to choose from.  They're actually being awesome and giving me 50 free cards for this post, but I'd give them props without the freebies!

Last year, I made calendars for several family members.  I know it was my mom's favorite gift and she has hinted no less than 1 million times that she wants one this year.  What I love about Shutterfly is how easy it is to use!  I made at least 5 calendars last year and each one was tailored to the person receiving it.  I was able to finish all 5 in one night and they were all delivered in time for Christmas.  I also sent some things to Don when he was deployed and one of the items didn't arrive, I contacted Shutterfly and they sent a replacement immediately, at no cost.  They also usually have great specials.  Right now, you can get free shipping on certain orders.

The only thing I don't like- there are too many great cards to select from!!!

I can't decide if I want to do a card that features the three of us.

Or if I prefer to just put Price by himself, after all we all know he's what everyone wants to see.

Do we rub it in acknowledge that we live on a tropical island and will probably hit the beach several times this month?

But no matter which one we go with, it may actually get sent before Mardi Gras.  Because Shutterfly will even stamp and mail the cards for me.  With that kind of service, I may not even ask for a Christmas present.

Full Disclosure Time:  I am being compensated by Shutterfly for writing this post.  I get 50 free cards for sharing my opinion about Shutterfly.  I have not been asked to write anything positive, but to share my opinion of Shutterfly and any past experiences that I've had.  If you're a blogger and want to get 50 free cards from Shutterfly, follow this link
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