Happy and Grateful – Day 354

One of my favorite months is upon us. I love the wonder of the holidays.  How it can light up young and old alike.  The weather is (usually) starting to change the world white and frosty.  And the promise of a new year is just around the corner.  This is the final month of my attempt to find the things that make me happy and grateful every day for a year… I have mixed emotions that it will be ending.  Please join me these last few days and post your happiness and gratitude in the comments or on your own blog.  There is always some good in the day no matter how small.

It was a busy day today.  I took Dad to his coffee group… well I say group but it is often just 2 or 3 other guys, not really a group.  But today we had 9 people there.  There were 4 “new” faces to the group for me.  But it was so nice because one of those people remembered my “sister” and asked about her.  She was the first female officer in town and lived across the street from me.  We hit it off and would ride bikes to the field where the college kept their horses and we would just spend time petting them.  They were beautiful!  So in spite of the anxiety of such a large group and new unfamiliar faces, I did have a good time and I was happy about that.

Now tonight it was all about the sweets.  Baked some chocolate chip cookies, made pretzels in white chocolate, peanut but crackers in chocolate and potato chips in chocolate.  I will divide some up for my doctor tomorrow, my daughter to take to work and my boyfriend to take to work.  Then Friday (when my daughter can help me) we will do some more candies… I have an easy toffee pieces recipe that uses butter, brown sugar and chocolate that is heavenly.  Every year when I make my goodies I remember Christmas time at my Gma’s house … she would make the most delicious treats every year  I am grateful to have those special memories.

Now I need to get some sleep soon… have to take Dad for another blood draw tomorrow.  Time to unplug the tree and shut off the computer.  Remember to find your happiness and feel your gratitude.  I hope you have a wonderful night/day!

12 Days of Christmas – Food

Just like many holidays there always seem to be some sort of food when friends and family gather, and Christmas is no different.  There are three main themes in my Christmas traditions around food.

Growing up we would always have some kind of sweet rolls, coffee cake, cinnamon rolls, etc. for a light breakfast before we would open gifts after a little bit of food.  That is a tradition we continued with my daughter.  In recent years we have had to alter that sadly to fit with schedules, but on occasion it still happens.

There is always a big meal. Growing up it would be an afternoon to evening meal depending on how early we woke up that morning. This year it will be a lunch with my boyfriends family consisting of a pot luck type meal where we all share food… we are bringing chili.  But we will also have a nice pot roast simmering in the crock pot to have for dinner with all the trimmings later when we return home to open gifts of our own.

Then the fun stuff!  Growing up I always remember going to my grandparents house and my Gma having the best sweet treats left out on the table to snack on throughout the day.  One of my favorites was always the white chocolate covered pretzels.  When I grew up and started family traditions of my own I had to include sweet treats.  What I bake and cook up has changed through the years, but there is always pretzels!  My daughter helps me make them now and hopefully will carry on the tradition when she has her own family too.

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Pretzels, potato chips, and peanut butter cracker bites
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Chocolate chip and peanut butter cookies

Just today my daughter and I made up cookies and candies.  We sampled as we created and approved of this years treats.  It makes for a long day to try to get them all done in one day.  And as a matter of fact there is still the new recipe item to make yet another day… a honey nut cookie ball.  We will share treats with friends and family.  Gather to eat a good meal.  And create more memories each year that passes.  What do you eat that is a special treat on Christmas?