baking

Fourth Annual Christmas Cookie Baking Day

What started as a new tradition for my mom and I in 2015 has now become such a special holiday event for our family!

The past three years, my mom and I have baked cookies together to give to our neighbors for Christmas. This year, my daughter (<–it still feels so weird/amazing saying that!) and sister joined in on the fun!

Sisters with baby daughterMother and daughters

My sister, Sadie, and I slept over my parents’ house on Friday night last week and spent Saturday baking, laughing, snuggling Sadie, and listening to Christmas music. Oh, and thinking about how next year, Hannah’s son or daughter can join in on the fun!

Here’s what we baked this year:
-Gingersnaps
-Cornflake Wreaths
-Pretzel Hugs
-Sugar Cookies
-Chocolate Crinkles
-Cranberry Bars
-Peanut Butter Blossoms
-Jam Thumbprints
-Turtle Thumbprints

Cornflake wreathsChristmas snowflake and peppermint sugar cookies decorated

While us girls were baking, Jimmy and Hannah’s husband, Josh, went hunting. It was Jimmy’s first time hunting and said he loved it! He saw a doe and already can’t wait to hunt with Josh again soon.

Aunt Hannah and Grandma Lisa took great care of Sadie. It was really nice to have extra hands to help out with my little chicka. Sadie thoroughly enjoyed all the attention and snuggles.

Baby on girls lapChristmas cookie baking

We stopped baking mid-day to run out and grab a few cookie tins (and coffee!) and got right back to work, rolling dough, decorating, and baking until dinnertime.

The boys showed up with pizza and we all enjoyed our evening together, packaged up our creations, and headed home all sorts of tired and happy from such a fun day.

The treats that were the biggest hits this year (we haaaad to test everything, you know 😉 ) were the pretzel hugs, cornflake wreaths, and gingersnaps!

Christmas cookies in a tin

After church on Sunday, Jimmy, Sadie, and I bundled up and gave the cookie tins to our neighbors. It was so fun bringing Sadie with us this year and our neighbors enjoyed seeing her in her Sunday best!

I just love this tradition. From spending the day baking with family, to giving to our neighbors, it’s a special day I really look forward to each holiday season.

I even filmed a video (not quite a vlog, it just has music and no talking for once, lol) of the day to remember it and I’ve already re-watched it a few times to relive the day again.

And for old times sake, here’s links to the past few years of Christmas cookie baking:
Cookie Day 2015
Cookie Day 2016
Cookie Day 2017

What’s your favorite Christmas cookie?

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Our First Thanksgiving As A Family

Jimmy, Sadie, and I celebrated our first Thanksgiving together and it was just as special as I imagined it would be. We didn’t have any big plans for the day, which was perfect for us.

Sadie and Jimmy slept in a little (!), so I used the quiet time in the morning to brew a pot of coffee, hang out with the pets, and get to work on some baking. I made mini pumpkin pies and prepped the turkey.

Mini pumpkin pies

Soon everyone was up and ready for the day so I fed Sadie and then we relaxed in her room and read her a few books.

It was really nice to have Jimmy home in the morning and take things slow. We kept telling Sadie happy Thanksgiving and were imagining her eating turkey next year… crazy!

Girl reading to baby

We spent the day relaxing around the house, cooking, and enjoying each other’s company. I could spend every day just like that and be content.

At one point, I turned to Jimmy and said “Can you believe we’re a family, us three?” and he just smiled as big as I was and said he couldn’t believe it. God has been very, very kind to us and we have so much to be thankful for.

I made jalapeño mashed potatoes, sauteed green beans, and gravy while Jimmy and Sadie cheered me on from the kitchen table. Our little gal is so observant. She just furrows her brow and watches the world around her.

Soon enough it was time for dinner! We pulled the turkey out of the oven, Jimmy carved it, and I set the table with the china from our wedding.

I need to use our china more often because we love the pattern and it reminds us of the day we made our wedding registry (<–I looked back on that post and why…. why was I wearing a Pikachu shirt in the last picture?! LOL.).

Thanksgiving dinner

After dinner we headed out into the cold weather (Pittsburgh didn’t break 30 degrees the whole day!) and made two trips to see Jimmy’s family.

I had fun dressing Sadie up in a turkey dress and then got sad that it would be the last time she would wear it. Little did I know that I’d be changing her out of it before we finished visiting everyone, lol.

The holidays feel extra special now, and it’s such a joy to see our families with little Sader Tot! Before we knew it we were back home snuggling on the couch and reminiscing on what a lovely day we had.

It was a great first Thanksgiving as a family and we felt incredibly blessed to have the day together to reflect on all we have to be thankful for!

Tell me about your Thanksgiving!