Some of Our Favorite Treats and Drinks for the Holidays

For the times they are a-changin’
– Bob Dylan

The tree is decorated.

The gifts are bought and wrapped.

The cards and packages have been mailed.

What’s left?

Christmas Baking!

We aren’t doing a family get together to bake Christmas cookies this year (see 2010 and 2011 Christmas Cookie Baking Days).  This doesn’t make me happy or sad.  It’s just different this year as our traditions are evolving on our journey to becoming complete empty nesters.

That doesn’t mean we won’t have Christmas goodies to make and share!  I let each member of the family pick ONE item that they wanted, and that is what we (or is it I?) will be making this year.

One of my all time favorite holiday bar cookies are:

Hello Dolly Dainties

Here is another version:

Holiday Seven Layer Bars – these are fun because the addition of dried cranberries and holiday colored candies make them so festive!

Peanut Butter Blossoms – a perennial classic.

Gooey Butter Cookies – so tender and good.

Chinese New Year Cookies – my mother made these for us every year when we were children.

Heavenly Hash (or Peanut Butter Rocky Road) – I got this recipe years ago from a former co-worker, and it is my oldest daughter’s favorite.

Grandma’s Fudge – my mother-in-law shared this recipe with my youngest daughters, and they are now in charge of making fudge.  They come up with new varieties every year!

Cathedral Cookies – a very easy cookie to make because there is no baking involved.  They look pretty on a holiday plate and taste good, too.  Another blogger recently linked to this recipe from my site, and I have had hundreds of hits on this What’s Cookin’ post!

We have a few favorite beverages, too!

Glühwein (Hot Mulled Wine) – my son-in-law introduced us to this recipe.  He was born in Germany, and we have really enjoyed sharing this warm drink with family and friends over the years.  This beverage contains alcohol and is for adults only!

Hot Apple Cider – nothing is better on a cold Winter day, and it smells and tastes like you imagine the holidays should.  A perfect, non-alcoholic alternative that is good for everyone!

The times they are a-changin’.

While many of our holiday traditions will continue, others will change and evolve, but they will always be filled with love, joy, and happiness.

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