Saturday, December 3, 2011

Let it Snow

It has been quite the holiday-filled day today -- and it snowed a couple inches late this afternoon, which just makes it all the more festive. Let it snow, baby! I'll take it : )

The morning began with...

...the mixing of some...

 ...Spritz cookie dough!

Bella (she has been named! Annabella for short...) is not so sure about the stand mixer. Look at that face!

Our 6th Annual Cookie Bake Off was held at my brother's house, complete with...

...the Elf on the Shelf! I had no idea this was such a big deal. Guess we'd better watch it or he'll tell Santa on us!

When I arrived at the Moe house, my brother and kiddo #1 were busy busting up the candy canes for the peppermint bark...

...nice work with that hammer! And sporting his Great Harvest apron, no less. Nice : )

Kiddo #2 is the true baker of the bunch...washing up, her own GH apron and I LOVE the chef's hat!

Kiddo #3, still in her jammies, giving continual commentary about Christmas, Santa, cookie baking, the elf. Did I mention, continual? Whew, that girl can talk...good thing she doesn't take after anyone I know!

Great gramma gives us a break by occupying her reading books. Thanks! ; )

My earnest baker decorating Spritz cookies.

Gramma pulls her cooled Snickerdoodles onto the breadboard to make room for the next batch out of the oven.

Kiddo #3 getting in on the fun. Follows very closely in big-sis's footsteps.

Here's our adult fun! A Bloody Mary and a sippy cup of water. Crucial to the cookie bake-a-thon. Along with a good breakfast base to tackle all the sugar from taste testing. Quality Control is a tough job, but someone's gotta do it! I had two eggs over easy and a piece of Cranberry Wild Rice toast. Protein and whole grains -- a winning combination. Almost too winning a combo...I had way too many cookie tastes. : (

Next, I went for a new Sugar Cookie recipe.

Yet somehow in my calculations with doubling the recipe, I goofed something up...

...and moved quickly to fix it.

No, Mr. Elf, I didn't say the "s" word in front of the kids! But I'll say it to you if you don't wipe that smirk off your face! : ) My sis-in-law said that kiddo #3 was scared of him when he first arrived and I don't blame her. Almost clown-like (*shudder*)...

...don't get me started on clowns.

Poor little stand mixer turned into the center of commercial kitchen disaster... wouldn't think I actually do this for a living.


Or I'm just used to larger mixers and tested recipes. In the end, we had way too many sugar cookies to contend with, but with all hands on deck, we made short work of it...

Kiddo #1 put in a practice run with some leftover Spritz dough.

Jill gets in the spirit with her Santa had and suits up the crew...

I prepare to demonstrate Sugar Cookie Cutting 101...not that anyone needed it, but I like to pretend.

Meanwhile my brother was out working on the ice rink he's building in the yard!


And my mom begins her infamous English Toffee Bars...

...the expert at work!

 Showing kiddo #2 how to take out the cut sugar cookie forms.

Kiddo #1 wanted in.

In the end, they all buckled down and decorated while I cut and baked.

What was that I said about messy??!?

But what's the big deal about a mess when you get to enjoy the fruits of your collective labor?

Yum, yum and yum!

Then, it began to snow and I drove home...

...or rather got out on the freeway and sat for a while.

We live in Minnesota, people! Don't you know how to drive in snow YET??!?

All was peaceful and calm at the homestead...

...wrapped in white.

Perfect night for... of these.

And, one of these!

12 Brews of Christmas!

The third brew of Christmas that my true love gave to me was...

Alaskan Winter Ale!

Brewed with Spruce Tips! Sounded so interesting, we couldn't pass it up.

A much lighter brew than yesterday's, smooth and easy drinking. Malty and refreshing. I can't say I really tasted much in the way of pine, but they call it a "winter warmer" which it certainly was. We had to pick this one for tonight since we finally put up our tree! Snow made for the perfect backdrop.

Can't mess with a good thing...when the starts align, and you're asked to dance, you just have to say...


Sweet dreams everyone!

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