Sunday, December 20, 2009

Snow Envy

While many of our friends up and down the east coast in the US are being blanketed with snow, we experienced a VERY small snowfall yesterday. The past few days have seen a few minutes here and there of snow in our part of the UK. The area south of London got 5 inches of snow on Friday and caused chaos in their area. The snow, coupled with the Eurostar's shut down over the weekend with 5 trains and hundreds of passengers getting stuck in the chunnel for over 12 hours, has caused complete mayhem for many holiday travelers in the UK.

In comparison, we feel fortunate to only have seen a dusting of snow in our area....
While I do NOT miss any part of the traffic or travel mayhem that comes with a big snow storm (especially about this time of the year), I do have to say I have had a bit of snow envy as I have watched photos pop up of friends and their children frolicking in the snow back in the US. Sometimes there is nothing better than being forced to spend a day at home, with a cup of hot chocolate in hand, and watch the snow pile up around you....

Now, ask me about this feeling once we are back in Chicago and are knee-deep again in snow, trying to dig our cars out from underneath the white stuff ---- and I will probably retract any sentiment about wishing I were in a more snowy place right now....

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Tis the season for baking...

I spent time this week baking up a holiday sugar high....
Per Scott's request, I made four large trays of cookies for him to bring into his office mates as a holiday sweet treat for all to share. Then, for each of his staff members and other colleagues from his department, I made "goodie bags" filled with bread, hot fudge sauce, and more holiday sweets. I made similar bags of goodies last year for his work colleagues and apparently they were a hit, as Scott's boss asked him a few weeks ago if his "Mrs" would be making the delicious holiday treats again this year? At least I am glad to know people enjoy the goodies! 

It does seem that holiday baking is not as big of a tradition here as it is in the US. In the US I used to receive many homemade goodies from friends and co-workers. Here, however, it seems the holiday card and maybe some liquor is more appropriate. Scott has been coming home with cards from all of his co-workers on a daily basis which have been addressed to both of us, wishing us a Happy Christmas. Additionally, our neighbors have actually walked over cards, rung the doorbell, and hand delivered these Christmas cards to us. In the US, most people would typically just mail their cards. I am not sure if this is a common UK tradition, but it seems more prevalent to us this year, now that we know more local people. 
The chocolate mint cookies as they were cooling with the mint/chocolate frosting.
Snickerdoodle cookies coming straight out of the oven. 
Orange almond poppyseed bread with its orange glaze. 
Two trays of fudge, peanut butter kiss cookies, and toffee bar cookies ready for Scott to take into his office. Funny enough, the peanut butter kiss cookies were the last cookies to be eaten! Must be a cultural difference since they are a favorite American cookie! 
Jars of Hot Fudge sauce ready for goodie bags.
Holiday cookies/sweets for the holiday bags.
The poppyseed bread wrapped up and ready to be put in the holiday bags. 

Monday, December 14, 2009

Snap Happy Holiday Decor

As our Christmas gift to one another this year, Scott & I decided to invest in a nice camera this year. So this weekend we purchased our new digital SLR camera and spent most of Sunday reading the user manual and testing the camera out by taking photos of everything and anything around our house. I thought the Christmas decor photos might be the only ones worth sharing on here! Hope your home is decorated for the season as well! 
A few of our new Czech Santa nesting dolls lined up on our windowsill that we purchased last weekend while in Prague. 
Our stockings are hung by our chimney with care. 
Not quite more Christmas decor, but more projects I have been working on lately...Christmas bibs for some little ones. I like these two designs the most.