Christmas Trees on the Traditional Side

My only male child is the BEST at hide-and-seek. Well, I mean, as long as the rule "If I can't see you, then you can't see me" applies and as long as hiding in the same place over and over is considered skill, then he's like a super hero of hide-and seek. World Champion even. A few days ago he was hiding behind the bassinet, under the Christmas tree while I was mopping the kitchen floor. (See what I did there? See how I managed to ever so casually mention that I was ACTUALLY cleaning my house? And then I made it seem like something that happens all the time and not something that was happening for the first time in a week...or three.) He talks to me all the time while he's hiding. As long as there is no visual contact, he's happy to be "hiding" out for a while.

We were talking about all sorts of important life things.

Male Child -- Mom, why are you cleaning?
Me-- Because its good for our house to be clean. It keeps us healthy and makes us happier.
Male Child -- Oh.

Male Child -- Mom, did you want to ask ME a question?
Me -- Umm, yeah, I sure did.
Male Child -- Okay. You can ask me a question.
Me -- Why do you like lying under the Christmas tree?
Male Child -- Because I like to look at all the colors of Christmas.

And contrary to what you might think after the pink trees and the blue snow tree is actually decorated a very traditional red, silver, brown and green. Pretend there are pine cones on this tree...and its like you are sitting in my living room. We're practically neighbors now.

I LOVE making these trees. They are really easy to make and even better --  OH SO VERY FORGIVING. Nothing needs to be perfect. At all. Not even a little bit perfect.

You need a #233 (grass) tip for these cookies and some real thick icing. Like, thicker than outline icing. As a reference, it should be able to hold a peak until it dries. And it should crust over in about 30 seconds. Oh yeah -- and you might want some thinner brown icing. Which is totally not in this picture. But I'm not about to re-take a picture just so you can see what thinner brown icing looks like.

Pipe on your tree trunk first. And let it dry a bit. Or not, actually. It really doesn't matter as long as it is on there first.

You want to start from the bottom of the tree and work your way toward the top, making branches as you go.

The key to having individual pine segments is to keep the tip from touching the cookie. Hover over the cookie and squeeze until the icing hits the cookie, squeeze for just a moment longer, and then pull away in a downward direction until all the icing strands have broken. It sounds complicated, but its really, really not.

Finish making clumps of branches all the way to the top of the tree. The less careful you are, the better. If you stress out about perfection, you're going to ruin everything. Unless, of course, you're really good at perfection, and then, you know, do your thing. (Clearly, I am NOT on the "good at perfection" team. That's why I LOVE these cookies.) 30 seconds. Done.

And just in case you need a moving visual... I made you a video! 

Oh, and you can make wreaths the same way. And just think about all the possible decorations you could add to these trees...sprinkles and sugar pearls and shiny stuff know... more stuff. But if you are going to add  some kind of beautiful and creative decorations, you should do it IMMEDIATELY after piping all the branches. Trust me on that one.


Get the tip here.

Tutorial for more whimsical trees here

The entire 12 Days of Christmas in Cookie from...all with tutorials... here.

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