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You’ll have to excuse her enunciation…a lot of the letters sound alike 😉

 

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Our year in pictures.

As I look through them, I am reminded of how good God is, and how very blessed we are.

There have been common trials this year, but I am grateful to say that the joys have far outweighed them.

It fills me with much faith and excitement for 2012, and all the years to follow after that.

I know there will be more trials and more joys

and perfect, sustaining grace for them all.

Happy New Year!

I was the kid who always wanted 2 feet of snow.
I watched the weather reports religiously.
And I got excited every time the weatherman predicted inches and inches of snow.
And I got super mad at my dad when he’d downplay it and say they were wrong and we wouldn’t get anything.
That was me.
And then came last year’s winter.
And, despite being 23 years old, I was in my glory.
That’s how much I love snow.
So it means something when I say, “Enough.”
Bring on spring already.
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My Basil pot is dead…

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But it will be back in the spring.

Snow is good for crafting (details coming later)…

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Snow is also good for having friends over and making pie.
Banoffee Pie.
Yes, that’s its actual name. 
Mine will not win any beauty contests, but it sure did taste good.

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And apparently more snow is on the way. 
I will have to come up with more activities besides pie-making.  Perhaps some yoga is in order to counteract the calories that come along with snowstorms.

Last night was my second year hosting a Christmas Cookie Exchange.
It was a blast.
All the cookies were so unique and yummy!!!

Traci brought Grandma Cookies (which, we don’t know what these are…but they are yummy…one of my favorites.)
Meghan brought Chai Snickerdoodles, despite her scramble for butter earlier in the day.  (I told her to just make some…but apparently I belong in Little House on the Prairie after giving that suggestion ha…)
Kelli brought 10 Layer Bars.  Mike spied that one right away and is saving it for after dinner tonight.  What self-control my boy has.  I, on the other hand, met my cookie quota for the day several (and I do mean several) hours ago.
Reenie brought THREE kinds of cookies: Haystacks, Shortbread cookies, and…I can’t remember the third kind.  But they were all delicious.  What we all really want to know is, did Mick end up buying a gallon of milk for the cookies that you weren’t supposed to bring home? 😉
Mom brought White Chocolate Macadamia cookies.  They were so yummy I almost dropped the entire platter on the floor in my excitement.  Or, I’m just clumsy.  Anyways, they are my dad’s favorite, and I now see why.
Michelle brought Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownies.  This busy teacher still found time to make her own special frosting…these are DECADENT.
Meagan made Holiday Biscotti with cranberries dipped in white chocolate.  These may have been the prettiest cookies there.  Very festive and delicious.
Heidi brought Pumpkin Chocolate Chip cookies (I had three for breakfast…I wasn’t lying about the cookie quota) and Joe sent along some of his famous sugar cookies.  Second year in row.  Still a winner.
Steph made Kisses and Reeses Blossom cookies…and I believe Tom helped??  He also helped her deliver the cookies, saying his excuse was to check out our house, but we all know he was really only there to see the cute babies. 😉
And Anya was going to make some of her fantastic sugar cookies, but alas, she has two little boys with pneumonia at home!  So I told her just to bring her lovely self and not worry about the cookies – she is an expert baker, and she did not need to prove herself…all we wanted was her company 🙂
Also sick was my dear mother-in-law, Cyndi, whom we had to do without.  We missed you greatly!!  Hope you are on the mend!
And I made Muddy Buddy cookies and Chocolate Chip Macaroons with Salted Candied Pecans (though I used Walnuts).

I wish I had taken pictures during the party, but we were having too much fun.  So, the only thing I have pictures of are the cookies I photographed before the party.

Muddy Buddy Cookies

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Chocolate Chip Macaroons with Salted Candied Pecans

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Have I mentioned I reached my cookie quota for the day?

A special shout out to all the husbands that either helped bake or watched the kiddos.  My own came into the kitchen as soon as he got home from work and set up a cookie assembly line…he then proceeded to dunk all my peanut butter cookies in melted chocolate and then pass them along to me (the powdered sugar girl.)  I would not have gotten it all done in time if not for his mad cookie skills.  Thanks lovey. 🙂

Merry Christmas!!!

Ok, so some commercials are just too good.
And if their mattresses really can do this, I just might be willing to shell out my life savings when Julia reaches the “Boing” age.

Collective Reminiscings

The Smittys

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