Just look at those beautiful images from one of my favorite magazines, Country Living. They really put you in the mood for decking the halls and having fun riding in a one-horse open sleigh. Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra knew how to make spirits bright, too!
find both albums at amazon.com
Look what came in the mail from my little brother Noah! He's so talented. Ramon and I are both very excited to see him for New Year's. He's growing up so fast, each time we see him it's a bit of a shock. Last time he was almost as tall as me. He asked me innocently, "Aren't you going to grow anymore?" "Nope," I answered, "This is it."
I also officially have my Christmas list ready for 'santa,' though the list only has one thing on it. The new Olympus Pen E-P1 digital camera. *SIGH* My husband, I mean, ehem, SANTA, is actually the one who suggested it. I would never dare request something so expensive. But he insisted I've been a very good girl this year, a good girl who loves taking photos and working in photoshop. I agreed to put it on my list, as long as it remained the only thing 'santa' gives me. To read about this fabulous, gorgeous camera, click here.
A big sign of the season: my fingers are itchin' to bake and ice Christmas cookies! I especially like baking Susan Branch's Cookie Cutter Ginger Crisps and decorating them intricately with royal icing. Other favorites include Betty Crocker's Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip cookies, which come out tasting like soft Butterfinger candy bars. I love the Betty Crocker cook books, especially 'Christmas' and 'Best of Baking.' Both are choc-full of really delicious classics.
As you all know by now, one of my favorite authors, and PEOPLE for that matter, is Susan Branch. She is a talented painter, wonderful cook, and general big-hearted, generous-souled, angel-winged human being. Below you can see some of her cookbooks among other favorites (if you look closely you can also see where Kiki gnawed off the bottom of the spine of 'Heart of the Home' when she was a naughty puppy).
She recently shared her annual 'Big Cookie Jar' as an early Christmas present for her fans, or 'girlfriends' as she calls us. I just can't keep this to myself and hope she doesn't mind if I share it with you! Full to the brim with Susan Branch baked goodness for you to make, enjoy, and share. Get the word out about her; she's a self-made lady, living her dream, pursuing her passion, and making the world a better place in her own adorable way.
(click HERE to get susan branch's cookie recipes!)
The days grow colder and Christmas with all it's bright lights, comfort, and joy draws near. As Gladys Taber once wrote: "Christmas is a Bridge. We need bridges as the river of time flows past. Today's Christmas should mean creating happy hours for tomorrow and reliving those of yesterday."
happy hall decking and cookie baking :)
xo country girl