Exciting Christmas Ideas!

As we enter the final days leading up to Christmas, I thought I would take a moment to share some of my favorite posts out there related to all things Christmas!

Here is the tree I wish I had in my house… complete with a train!!

Each year since their first Christmas, we get both Mei & Emily a special ornament with their name and the year on it that represents something about their year – usually something they really like and enjoy. Last year, each of them received a Sesame Street ornament, this year, Mei has Frosty the Snowman. She has been obsessed with watching it and waiting for it to snow here so that Frosty might visit. Luckily for her, it finally snowed and we spent about 8 hours in the snow over two days making mini snowmen and taking long walks in the snow, “just like Peter!”  We are still searching for Emily’s ornament, she is certainly making it hard to find an ornament, … nothing has really quite fit… Do you have any traditions like this?

the girls’ first ever snowman! mini-sized! in the first and only snow to date, of the season!

This year I participated in the Great Blogger Cookie Swap and the links for all 555 participants and their cookie recipes are UP! There are so many, that they have been broken into two links! I have been gathering endless ideas for the next batch of cookies that we are going to bake around here!

Part ONE! Annddd…. Part TWO! 

Here are some great tips for holiday baking from Joy the Baker! I feel like we all need to be reminded of the basics from time to time, even those of us that bake weekly or even daily!

Some warm, French Stollen on a snowy Paris day … wishing I was in Paris for Christmas!

I love making a playlist of somewhat un-traditional plus spins on traditional Christmas music each year to listen to that breaks up the monotony of all the Christmas classics that the stores seem to ruin for me, and this is my new favorite!

If you need a quick Gingerbread fix, look at this recipe and decorating ideas… makes me swoon!

Earlier this year, I made a goal to read 14 books by the end of the year this year. In previous years since leaving college, I have read an embarrassing small number of books compared to the 20-40 every ten weeks that I averaged in college. I have a “terrible” habit of reading books that I’m “going to read right away” so I decided to make myself accountable for my goal and posted a widget on my blog and maintain updates on how often I read and how much I read each time on my Goodreads account and I’m sad to say that I will not be meeting my goal this year, but I nearly made it!! Right now, I’m finishing up Gillian Flynn’s “Gone Girl”… its positively entrancing and so exciting!! Have you read it yet? Would you like to set a reading goal for next year? I think I’m going to try my lucky number 14 again – that’s one book per month plus two extra to sneak in there sometime…! I have enjoyed the challenge for sure and it’s fun to see what other’s  doing the same challenge are reading and what their goals are.

Lastly, one fun Christmas tradition to start with your family now! 🙂

That’s whats new this week while we are busily baking, shopping and doing all our other  getting ready for Christmas things! On a side note, I have just made the transition to self-hosting my blog so I will be slow with posts as I work on the updates and framework to get this blog “up to par” and looking like I want it – if there’s anything you would like to see in my blog or a widget you would find helpful for future reading and swooning, please be sure to let me know in the comments section!

Have a lovely week!

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