I hope that everybody out there found a little bit of magic for their Christmas. I had a wonderful time, and was especially blessed to be able to share the holidays with my mom and stepdad. The day was great, and I don’t know whether the full moon had an effect on us or not, but we ended the day in a fit of giggles, playing cards and tasting scotch. Maybe it wasn’t so much the full moon, but more so the scotch. At that point I got it into my head that the more scotch I drank, the more improved my hangover would be the next day. Snort. That is not how the world works. Actually, I feel fine today, and think that scotch tasting should become a new holiday tradition.
Looking back over the holiday season, one thing I really tried to do was celebrate a more thoughtful Christmas, with more homemade gifts from the heart rather than going out and splurging on things that will be tossed out or forgotten before we’ve made it to the new year. One of my favourite traditions at Christmas is the stocking – everyone buys small sweet little things for one another. It’s just fun to find little things that remind you of others! However, this practice can really add up. It’s supposed to be small, but all together I can end up spending more on a stocking then on a big Christmas gift for someone! Also, by nature of being small, often the gifts are cheap as well, and don’t last very long.
Not this year. I tried to find things that would be touching to the person receiving them, and while I did spend some money on them, it was significantly less than it has been in past years. For all my grown up gift receivers, I made a little lip sugar scrub, and decorated a small container to be Christmas-y.
This is such an easy little recipe, using ingredients you probably already have in the house. A touch of brown sugar in coconut oil, with a dollop of peppermint extract for a fresh taste, and you’re done. And it’s a great treat for the lips when they get all chapped in the dry wintery air.
Then I thought I’d get cute and make some lump of coal cookies. Clearly I’m not the first person to think of these, since Pinterest is filled up with people and their lump of coal recipes. But they went over really well – everyone was dubious about trying them, but they did taste really good, like chewy Oreos.
All you have to do is take a bag of Oreos, 5 cups of marshmallows and 4 tbsp of butter. Grind up the Oreos in a food processor until fine. Melt the marshmallows and butter in the microwave, about 1 1/2 minutes on high. Then mix everything together. At this point you can press into a buttered pan and allow to cool before cutting into squares – I just took the dough and broke off pieces, shaping into my closest approximation of a hunk of coal. My hope was that they wouldn’t look like pieces of pooh. I hope I succeeded.
My sweet little girl is too young for chewy sweets, and also not at all deserving of a lump of coal in her stocking, so I made up some teething cookies for her. She’s not actually even teething yet, but I let her gum these up a bit to get used to the feeling. I called them Angel Stars, because I’m a bit of a dork.
You can find the recipe for these at Imprintalish.
Other stocking stuffers that I put a bit of thought into were paintings made by the little ones and framed for their grandparents, and some draw-yourself mugs that I let X decorate. And while it cost a bit of money, I ordered some fridge magnets with pictures of the kids on them, as well as playing cards for Z that had his favourite photo of X and E on it. Everyone had smiles on their faces when they opened their stockings this year, so I guess that my work here is done. I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas, and continues to have a wonderful end of the year.