Monday, December 21, 2009

Happy First Day of Winter!


On this day, the first day of winter, we celebrate that Winter Solstice 2009 Is Shortest Day of the Year. In the United States and the rest of the northern hemisphere, the first day of the winter season is the day of the year when the Sun is farthest south (on December 21st or 22nd). This day is known as the Winter Solstice.

As I sit here looking out my window on Long Island, NY besides watching the kids play, all I can see on the first day of winter is snow.   I am thankful my childen were finished with school as of this past Friday and are on Christmas break until January 4th. There were no worries of trying to figure out how to get to school this morning though I know many schools were closed due to the East Coast Storm State of Emergency.  It all actually works out well for us.  Been forced to stay in and get things done.  I am having Chrismas Eve this year at my home which I used to do every year except for the last 3 years because of being sick two years and one year having an emergency tonsilectomy the day before Christmas...that surely was not plesant experience at all.  I am so in the spirit of Christmas this year.  Shopping is all done and now the cleaning and baking has begun.

Yesterday, we baked cookies we are going to finish up the cookies we baked yesterday by icing and decorating them.  They came out great!  I used a great recipe listed below.

Mrs. Fields Sugar Cookies

Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup colored sugar for decoration
3/4 cup butter

Directions

1.  Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).

2.  In a medium bowl combine the flour and salt with a wire whisk. In a large mixing bowl cream the butter and sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed. Add the egg and vanilla, and beat until well blended. Scrape down sides of bowl, then add the flour mixture. Blend on low speed just until combined. Do not overmix.

3.  Gather dough into a ball. Flatten the ball into a disk and wrap tightly in plastic wrap or a plastic bag. Refrigerate one hour until firm.

4.  On a floured surface, roll out dough to a 1/4 inch thickness. With cookie cutters, cut dough into desired shapes and place on ungreased cookie sheets. Decorate with colored sugars or sprinkles. Bake for 13-15 minutes, being careful not to brown. Immediately transfer cookies with a spatula to a cool, flat surface.

Later on today, I want to do some cleaning and a little more decorating...found another box of things I had I forgot to put out.  I also have to order our ham for Christmas Eve dinner from Honey Baked Ham.  I almost wasn't going to this year but my daughter Brittany said, "what Mom, no ham on Christmas Eve."  so needless to say I am ordering the ham. 

Have a wonderful and peaceful first day of Winter!!

Hugs!








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