Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Decorated Snowman Cookies

Merry Cookie Season!! Are you all still crazy decorating? I finished these cookies ahead of schedule and kind of lost my head. I mean...not running behind? At CHRISTMAS TIME? I don't even... does. not. compute. I started thinking all these crazy things like "Maybe I'll clean my house today" and "Oooh, or I could take all 4 of my children Christmas shopping. In the evening. When every one else in the entire world is also shopping. I could probably run out and back real quick before they get hungry and cranky and have a complete meltdown in the middle of the store." Luckily I came to my senses and we played "Salon Day" while eating cheesy chips instead. Best day ever.

I even got to use one of my cousin's fabulous cards as inspiration for cookies. She makes cards and other incredible paper projects over at her blog -- Simply Pam's Creations. And once a month or so she lets me take one of her card ideas and remake it in cookie form. And then she makes one of my cookies into a card. It's so fun!

See? She's go the best ideas!! As soon as I saw these snowmen I knew the baby cutter from Karen's Cookies would be perfect!

1. Use a food color marker to trace a circle cutter as a guideline for the head. I didn't do this for the first two and things just got all wonky.
2. Outline and fill the head portion with medium consistency white icing. Let it dry for a while if you are going to make the shirt a bright color. You don't want them getting extra-friendly on you.
3. Outline and fill the shirt area with medium consistency orange icing. Again, let this dry for a while so the colors don't bleed. Alternatively... you could do steps 2 and 4 at the same time. I didn't because I just don't trust myself to get everything to match up right.
4. With the medium white icing, add the bottom part of the snowman.
5. Make a small circle of icing on either side of the head with icing. Add the cutest little heart in green on the shirt.
6. With a #3 tip and orange icing, pipe a hem line across the bottom of the shirt. Add some mittens.

7. Add arms with thick black icing and a #3 tip. I did the eyes and the mouth with a #1.5 tip. Pipe a headband with blue icing and a #3 tip.

Don't forget to drop by my cousin's blog HERE to see which cookie if mine she made into a card!


You can find the baby cutter at Karen's Cookies.

And you can get the tree cutter at Whisked Away Cutters.

Go see Santa and all of his friends with Callye at The Sweet Adventures of SugarBelle.


Or make some whimsical Christmas trees and snowmen HERE.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Quick Wet-On-Wet Poinsettia Cookies

I decided to start exercising again this month. I'm super dedicated like that. I know it's the holidays and all and there is no time and just massive amounts of sugar all over the place. But really, when it's your health in question, can you be too cautious? It started out like this --

Day 1 -- Wearing my super-flexible and trendy layered black work out outfit that form fitted to my exact measurements, I anxiously waited for the clock to strike 9:00am. I had planned my day out precisely so I would have plenty of time to exercise, shower, and still get everything done on my to-do list while still engaging in thought provoking and developmentally appropriate activities with my well behaved children. I pressed play on my very exercisey video that has 2 letters and a number and rhymes with "Smee-Pinetee-Mex". I got all sweaty kind of fast. And took off at least 3 layers of clothes.... but I did *not* give up. I kept pushing through and I was feeling mighty proud of myself until I realized I was only about half way through the warm up. During "stretching time" I took the liberty of stretching my hands while lying on the floor. I mean, really, when was the last time you stretched your hands? They're always overlooked. And I'm not about to just give up on making myself the best me I can be just because someone else is telling me to do ninety jillion pushups instead. No sirree. I will not be bossed like that. Then I took a water break. Because they say that you're 75% water. And that drinking water is more important that exercising because if you don't drink water you'll die. That part is true. I didn't just make it up. By that point I'd done at least 7 push ups and stretched my hands, so I pretty much called it a day and let my girls finishing watching what they thought was a push-up dance party.

Day 2 - I wore my old running shorts and a t-shirt this time. I didn't even put on shoes. It's IN my house. Why do I need shoes? Also, I wasn't able to actually reach my feet this morning because all those muscles in between kind of stopped listening to me after those 7 hard core pushups yesterday. But I was still ready to go by 9:05am. The girls and I decided on a plyometrics video. I thought it would be great because it sounds a lot like Lie-O-Metrics. And that sounds perfect. As it turns out though, plyometrics really means jumping until your legs fall off. And I like my legs. I don't want them to fall off. I did just the right amount of jumping so my legs stayed right where they belonged and then I went in the other room to "check on the baby".

Day 3 - At 10:00am my girls asked if they could watch the push-up dance party movie again. We watched it while eating my favorite Christmas cookies of all time. Whew. It was a good thing I started exercising so I didn't feel so guilty. Also, I think you can kind of see my arm muscles now. I'm totally planning on doing this again next week so I can justify eating more cookies. Like maybe some poinsettia cookies.

Start by cutting out a star cookie. Then take a point of the star and cut into each of the original points. There is no need to be neat or precise. Just haphazardly lop those points off.

1. Bake the cookies and let them cool.
2. Since this is all wet-on-wet and you have to work fast, I made you diagrams instead of taking pictures of the actual process. Outline and flood the cookie with medium consistency light blue icing.
3. Using a #2 tip and dark blue icing, pipe 5 loops. Start in the middle of the cookie and pipe a loop into alternating points. (Pipe a loop, skip a point, pipe another loop, skip a point...)
4. Immediately go back and pipe 5 more loops into the points you skipped the first time.
5. Pipe one more set of 5 loops, this time much smaller and into the "valleys" created by the double points. Basically... wherever there isn't already a loop...add one.
6. Quickly drop some tiny sugar pearls around the center of the poinsettia. And then breathe. It's like lightning round cookies.

They really are perfect for the holidays because you can decorate them all in one step and then let them dry while you go get ready for your fancy party. Also, I was going to make some in red and white too with silver dragees in the middle. But then I didn't. You know, because of all the push ups. So if any of you make them... will you show me? I want to see if they are as striking as I hope they'll be.


I think the stars with the wide points make the best poinsettias, like these nesting stars from Wilton.

Make the stockings from a candy cane cutter HERE.

Start a new holiday tradition with 3D gingerbread cookie sleighs! Tutorial, template and link to a cutter HERE.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Candy Cane Christmas Stocking Cookies

I used to do Adventure Races. That's where they give you a map, some coordinates, and a paddle. And you have to run, hike, swim, bike, and paddle all over some strange location to find some flags or codes and bring them back to the start before anyone else gets there. And there are all these crazy challenges in the middle of nowhere. And you get super tired and kind of smell bad but it's totally worth it. Especially when my team came in before the all-guy teams that were making fun of us earlier in the day. Umm, yeah... I'm not what you would call "a good winner." But I LOVED the craziness. And jumping my bike off of things.

It was kind of sad when I became a parent and I didn't get to do stuff like that all the time anymore. Until I realized that being a parent is JUST LIKE THAT. I mean, you're tired and kind of smell bad and there are these crazy challenges all over the place. Like throwing together a birthday gift for my son's teacher in exactly 3 1/2 minutes because he told me it was her birthday as we were walking out the door. Or hiking up the stairs with a child attached to each leg while simultaneously singing a princess song and meal planning. Because children have no warning. It's like, "Here I am, happily scribbling away with my coloring book and cray---AAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!! I'm starving!!! I need food!!! WHY??? WHY WOULD YOU DO THIS TO ME??!!!"

Or going to the store and returning with vegetables, milk AND my ever loving mind. I rarely win this one.

My personal favorite challenge is called the "object of security search." Basically, we put my 3 year old in bed and she starts crying. That signals the beginning of the challenge. Both parents have to run around the house searching for the bunny before she escalates to LEVEL:SCREAMING. And I've got to tell you... nothing is more satisfying than leaping over a chair and spying one long ear poking out from a kitchen drawer and knowing the day is finally over. And also, knowing that I found it first. Like I said..not a good winner. And the best part? Once that well-loved bunny is found, I get to claim my prize -- time alone to make cookies!! Like these fun stockings from a candy cane cutter.

1. Before you bake the candy canes, pull the top out just a little bit. Once baked and cooled, outline and flood the stocking in white, leaving a small gap at the top for the cuff. Allow the white icing to dry completely.
2. With thick icing and a #1.5 tip, add a diamond pattern across the stocking.
3. Flood the cuff section with pink icing and cover with sanding sugar.
4. Add the toe patch and heel patch with the same pink icing.That's it! So easy and fun, right?! WAY better than the grocery store challenge.


Any candy cane cutter would work, but in case you don't have one, you can snag it HERE or HERE.

Make a different kind of stocking with or without a stocking cutter HERE.

Or throw something in your stocking with Sara at Klickitat Street

Friday, December 12, 2014

12 Days of Giving: Day 12

Day 12. It's finally here!! I have been containing this inside of me for longer than is healthy for any person. Especially for a cookie decorator. Especially for me as a cookie decorator. And now I get to tell you all!!

But first, let me tell you a little bit about where this prize is coming from. The Cookie Cutter Company is easily one of my favorite places to get cutters. They have a great selection of low priced cutters that ship lightning fast....and have you met Matt? He's that guy that answers your questions and ships out cookie cutters with his lightning fingers and fixes any problem you could possibly have while telling you a joke at the same time. He's also the guy that says stuff like this --

"We at The Cookie Cutter Company believe that Christmas is a time for cheerful giving, and we do love to give! So we have decided to donate a New Artisan KitchenAid Mixer with choice of colors, (that we provide) along with a Nativity Cookie Cutter Set. What better way to say Merry Christmas than with a mixer and some cookie cutters :)" 

What? Go ahead and read that again. It's true! On the 12th Day of Christmas -- Sweet SugarBelle, LilaLoa and The Cookie Cutter Company bring to you --


And a Nativity Cookie Cutter set. Although, to be perfectly honest, I got a little dazed after the KitchenAid mixer part and didn't grab a link for the cutters. I'm sure you can understand. :)

To enter, leave a comment below telling me one piece of kitchen equipment you can't live without. For additional entries, be sure to visit The Cookie Cutter Company and check out SugarBelle's, LilaLoa, and say "Thank you" to The Cookie Cutter Company on Facebook.

You must be 18 or older to win, US entries only please.  The giveaway will end at midnight MST December 15, 2014.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Be sure to jump over to The Sweet Adventures of SugarBelle and enter to win a KOPYKAKE PROJECTOR!!! (I told you this was a good day!) 

And if you've just come from there, check out all the other days of giveaways and enter the ones you've missed! 

Day 1 -- Ultimate Cookie Cutter Collection. (Giveaway Closed)
Day2 -- A necklace of your choice from Petit Four Miniatures and a $25 gift card from Whisked Away Cutters.   (Giveaway Closed)
Day 3-- "You Can't Judge A Cookie By It's Cutter" by Patti Paige and a $25 gift card from Cheap Cookie Cutters.  (Giveaway Closed)
Day 4 -- $25 gift cards to Copper Gifts.  (Giveaway Closed)
Day 5 -- THREE letter cutter sets from Cake by Ximena.
Day 6 -- $50 gift card to Karen's Cookies.
Day 7 -- $50 gift card for The Cookie Countess stencils and Stencil Genie from Creative Cookier.
Day 8 -- 100 Animal Cookies cookie decorating book. Enter at LilaLoa and again at The Sweet Adventures of SugarBelle.
Day 9 -- 12 Days Of Christmas Copper Cutters   OR Decorating Cookies Party and a $25 Gift Card to TMP.
Day 10 -- $25 Gift Card to Rolling Pin Prints Cutters OR Complete set of Progels and a Petal Dust Palette. 
Day11 --  $50 Gift Card to Country Kitchens  OR  One year subscription to McGoo U Online.


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