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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Gingerbread men and Chirtmas fun.....

So, I know I have been on here quite a bit lately talking about the ups and the downs of raising children with special needs, or rather more accurately, dealing with a world still struggling to accept all people as they are, no matter what their abilities, behavioral/social challenges, or medical status.  So I have not posted much about our Christmas preparations  (Sorry for the lack of pictures, I have not emptied my camera as I can't find the cord to do so, but some pics will be coming soon)....

A couple of weeks ago we put up some outdoor lights and started our nightly advent calendar, which has a great piece of chocolate behind each door.  and one of the things that I greatly appreciate about my children is that they do not try to sneak another candy out of one of the other little windows, the thought never crossed their mind.  They love that nightly ritual of finding the right number, opening the little door, reading the words behind the door, and pulling out that morsel of chocolate to unwrap and enjoy. YUM!

Last weekend I tried a few different cookie recipes--mainly trying to find both a sugar cookie and a gingerbread cookie recipe that we like the flavor and that are easy to work with.  I found a wonderful tasting sugar cookie recipe, and if I do the ball and flatten method they are great--very easy and quick, but cutting them with cookie cutters was a bit more difficult, so a LOT of in and out of the fridge to firm up the dough.  BUT they did make great shapes, held their shape well, and were the best tasting sugar cookie I have had.  So I will make it again. 

Then I found the best light tasting gingerbread cookie recipe (while I like traditional gingerbread, with dark molasses, the kids are not fond of the flavor).  This recipe for gingerbread men is perfect!  It has a nice light ginger flavor, it forms a great dough ball and is very easy to roll out, cut with cookie cutters, and transfer.  I made a dozen and half cookies this weekend (which we all had a blast decorating), and they were all gone by Monday afternoon.

The icing I used for us to decorate with came out beautiful.  It was another recipe I found on and was shiny, beautiful icing that was easy to work with and dried shiny...and it worked great on both the sugar cookies and the gingerbread men.  Yesterday the kids and I made another 3 dozen gingerbread men cookies (both gingerbread man and snowman shapes), as today is a cookie workshop for grades Pre-K thru 2nd grade at Josiah's school.  So we signed up to send in a couple dozen cookies to decorate.  And at 10:00 I will take the little girl I babysit up to school to join the festivities of cookie decorating.

This weekend we also put up our tree!! Gonzo had a great time decorating.  Josiah however was not keen on it, he hung a couple of ornaments, but was not very interested in it really.  We also put up the tree at A's house.  Again Gonzo was excited to help, and Josiah was not really interested, but did put on a couple of ornaments. 

I have wrapped most of our Christmas gifts, which is a new record for me, usually i have at least half of the gifts still to wrap on Christmas eve, which means short night.  As we will be visiting A's family the 23rd and 24th, and making the 5 hour drive on on Christmas Eve, I did not want a lot of wrapping on top of tat, we need rest before the busy and long day that Christmas often is.  We will be at A's house for the overnight so the kids will wake up there Christmas morning.  While I love having Christmas morning at home, it is A's turn.  It will be fun.

I hope you all are having a wonderful Holiday season.  Happy Hanukkah to all those who have begun celebrating this wondrous 8-day holiday.  And Merry Christmas to all who are enjoying advent and preparing for the celebration of Christ's birth.  And Happy holidays to all others who are celebrating Kwanzaa, Yule, Solstice (TODAY), and all other holiday traditions surrounding this festive time of year!!

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