Thursday, December 25, 2008

Spreading some Holiday Cheer

Making Christmas cookies was something I was going to nix if I got too busy this year.  But. . . since our plans changed with friends canceling their trip to see us, we made time to do this.  I'm glad we did because it is so much fun for the kids!  Since they are older it's not as messy as usual but it's still quite a job to clean up afterwards and not make a total disastrous kitchen!  

Our goal was to make enough cookies to share with our neighbors plus have some leftover to enjoy ourselves.  I think plain ol sugar cookies with a little bit of almond flavored icing and some sprinkles are still my all time favorite!

Have you ever noticed how children seem to break the ice with neighbors and have no inhibitions in meeting new people?  We have found our neighborhood here is Texas to be much more private (for lack of a better word).  It's not that our neighbors are unfriendly but just busy and no one seems to go out of their way to strike up conversations with each other, except for Rich.  He is the most out-going person I think I've ever met.  There is something, though, to having driveways and garages in the front of houses verses in the back.  In our town everyone has alleys and so we come and go out the back of the house and don't run into our neighbors ever unless we are all doing front-yard work at the same time.  This only happens seasonally which doesn't foster much relationships with each other.

Our children have been playing in the alley a lot these past few months and have met our next door neighbors a few times.  They stand outside with their dog and talk with our kids.  Julia, especially has made a friend with the gal next door.  So with an excuse to knock on doors and sing carols, pass out cookies, and make contact with people who live near-by, we took advantage of the Christmas season. 

This is a Texas shaped cookie and Julia is decorating it with our flag colors using LOTS of icing as usual!  She loves sugar and can never seem to get enough of it.  Every kid's dream, right!

A.J. kind of spear headed this whole project!  He knew I was not as excited about the extent of it than he was.  He and Olivia made the cookie dough one day and let it chill and then we spent the entire next day baking and decorating. I do not know how women make more than one kind!  Two friends of ours made up a variety of cookies and gave them to us!  Now that's a lot of planning, shopping and darn hard work!

Personalities really come out when decorating cookies.  This is our first born perfectionist girl.  She took so long on this cookie!  She would rather have one nice one than 10 sloppy cookies.

Now Reece would rather have 10 sloppy ones then waste time on one cookie!  He was on a mission to decorate as many as possible!

This is just a few of the cookies we made!

The kids had a blast handing all the cookies out.  They really wanted to bless our neighbors this Christmas and we had plenty left over.  We even had enough to bless a friend who stopped by unexpectedly! I wish I had picture of us all bundled up with cookies plates in our hands ready to meet the neighbors but you'll just have to trust that we did not eat these all ourselves!  It really is fun to give at Christmas time!  

Our next goal will be to organize a block party in the Spring!  I'll keep you posted if we get up the nerve to pull it off!

Merry Christmas! 

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