Friday, January 8, 2021

2020 #Christmas Spirit #ReadingChallenge and #Readathon - Wrap-Up #CSReadathon


Sorry I'm so late with this wrap-up. A lot going on in life and the world right now. It's very distracting. Turns out, I had a very distracting holiday season as well. Managed to read two Christmas books. That's it. 2020 was just weird. I'm sure we would all agree.

Anyway, it's a new year. Happy New Year, by the way!

How did you do on the reading challenge/readathon? Share your wrap up link in the linky below. It's the same linky as the sign-up so just add "wrap-up" when you enter your name, like so "Michelle@truebookaddict-Wrap-up" (you don't have to put a blog name, you can just put your name).
 
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Hope to see you again next year!

Always in spirit...

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

A Festive #Yuletide - It is a Wonderful Life #Christmas


I was watching that quintessential classic, It's A Wonderful Life tonight while I was decorating more cookies. (As many know, I like to keep my Yuletide celebrations going until Twelfth Night.) I usually watch this movie every year, but this year something was different. The message meant more to me. At the end, I was in tears. I've always been touched by this film, but this year, it really made me reflect. 

We've all had a rough year...the entire world. Many have lost loved ones, friends. We've been separated from our families and our social groups. Our way of life is not the same. Will it ever be? These are the questions and these are the struggles we are all having. 

As I look ahead to the new year with hope, I keep in my mind the message of It's a Wonderful Life. It IS a wonderful life. Every single one of us matter. Every one of us would be missed if we were gone. Every life we have ever touched would be changed forever if we never existed. 

So, think on it. I know it's hard right now, but just being alive is wonderful. Our family and friends knowing we are out there somewhere, and finding comfort in it, is wonderful. Hope is wonderful, and so is love. 

It really, truly is a wonderful life. 


Always in spirit...

Sunday, December 27, 2020

A Festive #Yuletide - Weekend #Baking Sugar Cookies #Christmas


During Christmas in July this year, I shared a recipe for Amish Sugar Cookies, a favorite I've whipped up during the pandemic many times. I really love to bake, but for some reason, during the holidays this year, I lacked motivation or any desire to bake cookies...something I love to do every year. I simply could not muster the gumption or inclination to make roll out dough and royal icing. So, I looked for shortcuts. I wanted to be able to outline, and fill in by flooding, the cookies without having to mix up multiple batches of icing. I've tried frosting with canned cake frosting before, but I wanted a more streamlined look. Well, I found an idea by Googling it.

This lady suggested halving the can of frosting. Half a can as is in a piping bag with piping tip (I use cake decorator squeeze bottles with piping tips) and the other half, melt in the microwave (15-20 seconds), stir and place in a squeeze bottle (I bought a few extras from Walmart- very affordable). I used white, blue, red, and green frosting from the can. Yes, they do sell those vibrant colors (again, Walmart came through). Thanks to my sis for the heads up. Now, I outlined with the plain white, and the colors, and only flooded with melted frosting in white. I didn't want to mess with flooding all the different colors since I was going to be using sprinkles anyway. 

My second dilemma was an alternative to rolling out and cutting the cookies. I have a ton of lovely Christmas cookie cutters, but I just wasn't in to the hassle this year. Then I had an idea. Why not make Amish Sugar Cookies, but just a little different than the normal way. I mixed up the batch and once I was ready to bake, I scooped each cookie (approximately 1.5 tablespoon) and then rolled it into a ball. I placed the balls on the baking sheet (lined with parchment paper), as directed. Then I flattened each cookie with the bottom of a glass dipped in flour. After baking, the cookies came out almost perfectly round. VoilĂ ! Ornaments! I decorated with the frosting (as above) and sprinkles. Here's some of my finished product (I still have more to decorate). They're not perfect, but pretty nonetheless, in my opinion. 


Visit this post for the Amish Sugar Cookies recipe.
The frosting technique can be found at Lady Behind the Curtain.


Always in spirit...

Friday, December 25, 2020

Merry Christmas - May your days be merry and bright...


I'm dreaming of a white Christmas
Just like the ones I used to know
Where the tree tops glisten
And children listen
To hear sleigh bells in the snow, oh, the snow

I said, I'm dreaming of a white Christmas
With every Christmas card I write
May your days be merry and bright
And may all your Christmas' be white

I said, I'm dreaming of a white Christmas
Just like the ones I used to know
Where the tree tops glisten
And children listen
To hear sleigh bells in the snow

I'm dreaming of a white Christmas
With every Christmas card I write
May your days, may your days, may your days
Be merry and bright
And may all your Christmas' be white

I'm dreaming of a white Christmas
With every Christmas card I write
May your days be merry and bright
And may all your Christmas' be white

Always in spirit...