Baking Holiday Cookies As Gifts....

This past few days were all about baking holiday cookies.

My friends, neighbors and the man who saved my life, Dr. Walsh will be getting pretty packages of assorted cookies this week.
I love to bake and the holidays give me the opportunity to create and just have fun.

Peanut Butter, Snickerdoodle, Sugar, Gingerbread Men and some Peanut Butter/Dark Chocolate Fudge along with several Cheese Cakes,  I made dozens of Cookies and decorated them in a variety of colors.

The gold cookie box will go to my Dr's office. Included in the box is a warning,  for those who can not have peanuts.

While in Michaels  I picked up a sweet Wilton product, with 4 cookie boxes.  Each came with the outer cellophane wrappers with little red bows.  Perfect size for two dozen cookies

The hostess of a holiday party we will be going to tonight will get an added bonus of a Cheese Cake made especially for her (I made three),  on a decorative holiday serving plate.

This week I'll be passing out my gift bags of cookies to a special few, if I can keep Mr. N from eating them.  He too will bring a package  to his work. That should make his coworkers smile while slaving over their jobs.

The holiday cookies bring me back to when my children were small.  We had such fun baking and decorating each little cookie while having hot coco.  How I miss those days!
This is my way of keeping those precious memories alive in my heart! 
What really makes me smile is my grandsons just might be closer to me next Christmas.  They will be moving back to the states in June with their mom and military dad and I'm so excited about being closer to them.
I want to bake cookies with my grandbabies!

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"Happy Holidays"



Did you know.....

Search & Win

For all who do not know about "Swagbucks",  it's a search engine that you can score points that can be used on gift cards and other ways to get Free Stuff while searching.  

I've been a member of the Swagbucks web site for over a year now, and this year  I have bought most of my Christmas gifts on by using the Amazon gift cards that I earned, and I did  not spend one penny,  using the  
"Swagbucks Search Engine"

 I just found out that
"Swagbucks is going crazy on Monday, 
with more ways for you to earn reward points towards free stuff. First, they're having a Swag Code Extravaganza, which means a fun day where you can earn up to 70 Swag Bucks from 8 different codes throughout the day! 

Second, there's a new set of Holiday Collector's Bills which you can only earn through search - get all five and you'll receive an instant 12 Swag Bucks bonus! 
The set starts at noon on Monday 

Finally, for any referral you bring in today through the 19th, you'll not only get up to 1000 matching Swag Bucks from Search, but 1000 Matching Swag Bucks from everything they earn (not including codes) all day Monday - they're calling it Mega Match Monday!
Three big reasons to visit Swagbucks this Monday!"

Once you register, I've been authorized to give you your first 100 Swagbuck Registration code that you can use.  
It'll be live through December 31st and it's worth 100 additional Swag Bucks for new  users when applied during registration only. It'll be active starting at 12:01am PT tomorrow (Friday, December 16th) the code is HOLIDAYSWAG.

 For all of you that are a bit skeptical click below and look into the Swagbucks Search Engine.  There are no tricks or jokes about this very serious way to improve your buying power.

Search & Win

"Good luck"
and Happy Holidays!

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Welcome The Holidays With Traditions, and a bit of Trivia

There is nothing better than the smell of fresh made 
Cinnamon Buns.

I used a simple white bread recipe and made the dough the night before in my mixer. Let it rise about an hour then rolled the dough into a rectangle and spread some milk on the dough then the cinnamon, sugar and flour mixture. I then rolled the dough into a pinwheel shape. Cut and put into the pan lined with parchment paper. I then put the covered pan in the fridge for the night. 

The next morning I let the pan sit on the counter  and let the dough rise until double the size. This second rising took about an hour.

The rolls baked about 20 minutes and the entire house had this wonderful cinnamon smell about it. 
I made a simple sugar drizzle for the top of the warm buns.  Powered sugar, vanilla and milk.

No need to call Mr N to the kitchen this weekend morning.
He smelled his way down the stairs. But before settling down with my coffee to eat one of these wonderful buns I took two on a warm plate to Mr. Charley, a single senior, two houses down from me. . His eyes lit up at the sight of his warm gooey breakfast treat.
 The holiday weekend mornings are best with such goodies.

The holidays are filled with festive days and this is just one of the many things I do to welcome Christmas into my home during the weeks prior. 
Traditions they call them.
What are yours?
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A bit of trivia about Christmas.

What Christmas figure was created in 1939 by Robert May as a Christmas promotion for Montgomery Ward department store in Chicago?

(Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer)

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The Colors of Christmas Trees

Christmas trees have taken on such bold and colorful hues the past few years.  Pine Green is just so outdated.  Here are Blues, Reds, Lime Green. I was not able to get photos of the Pinks, Purple and Yellows, they were sold out!
The Cactus Tree was fun....

The Christmas Store here in Clearwater is open all year and has anything you might want or need to decorate your home.  My sister and I went to shop there the other day and I was amazed at the isles and how they were depleted of merchandise.  The tree room had signs on most trees, "This is the last one available".  The Red Tree is really beautiful but I just can't see myself putting it in my living room.

Lime Green, well that was a bit much for me.

I remember when my children were young I could have used the White Upside Down tree. Just hang it from the ceiling  to keep it safe from little hands and your pets.

I think Santa prefers the standard Green Christmas Tree because that is the one he  stood by with his ladder.  It was that tall, and the price tag was $898. 

I just love Christmas trees and here in So. Florida  most people do not buy real trees.  The cut trees are trucked down from the North and most are cut so early that they have no pine smell at all.  My neighbor gets a real tree each year and right after Christmas it's so dry that most needles fall off as she works at getting it out of the house.  I'm afraid it is a fire hazard.

Let me share a photo with you, my one purchase in the Christmas Store... my new ornament!
"Born to Blog"

Don't you just love it!
Happy last week and a half of Christmas Shopping!

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A bit of Holiday trivia

What popular children’s cracker was introduced in 1902 as a Christmas ornament?

(The Barmum’s Animal Cracker and box was introduced by the National Biscuit Company. The box, just as it does today, had a string attached to it so that it could be hung as a Christmas ornament).

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Christmas Shopping at the Beach, and a bit of Christmas Trivia

My sister and I went down the Gulf Coast just south of Clearwater Beach,  to "Johns Pass"
The area is along the intracoastal and has a variety of small shops to choose from.

One of the shops caught my eye.  It was full of the most beautiful sea life, glass and crystal figurines.

And  crystal Christmas ornaments.

Then I came upon a beaded Peacock

The shops are all decked out for the Christmas shoppers but also had the usual tourist items for all the "Snow Birds" that come to town in the winter.

Everyone needs a Coconut family.

The items in most of the shops were what one buys while on vacation, but my favorite shop had  yard ornaments.

And wind chimes...  the one I wanted was well over $600.00. Guess I'll have to hope someone loves me that much and it's placed under my Christmas Tree.

In need of a bathing suit or sandal's?

Or a few beach toys and a towel.

Everyone needs a gator head or sea shell, to take home from their Christmas vacation.

This shopping area south of Clearwater Beach, on Gulf Blvd,  is such a beautiful area.  My sister and I had fun  in the sun and picked up a few Christmas gifts.
I'm a lover of Chandeliers and this one caught my eye.  It's full of sea shells.

In the mood for a beach Christmas vacation.  The shopping is great and it's in the 70's and sunny.
Come on down!

A bit of Christmas Trivia for your pleasure

According to German tradition, what kind of glass Christmas ornament has to be found on the Christmas tree to determine who opens the first Christmas gift?

(The Glass Pickle ornament) 

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