Holiday Traditions on Fast Track!

I feel like the sleigh Santa uses turned into a locomotive! Since when did Christmas come so fast? Yesterday my grand-daughter announced the imminent arrival of Christmas and I couldn’t believe it. No! I need more time! Santa’s coming in a locomotive!

I’ve been busy trying to fitting in all those holiday traditions. We all have them, the things we remember forever, and look forward to every year. Here’s my list…

Cookie Baking:
Saturday was cookie baking with my grand-daughters Alyssa and Michaela. We made 4 kinds of cookies. What was I thinking? After hours of waiting for the sugar cookie dough to chill, rolling out dough, cleaning up the flour on us and the floor, our favorite was the plain old chocolate chip cookies! The sugar cookies were just OK, so if someone has a GREAT sugar cookie recipe please share it!

Break the Bank:
We save our loose change in the piggy bank during the year and a few days before Christmas we empty the pig, turn in the coins at Safeway and off we go with the girls shopping. The loot came to almost $50 so it was off to get a present for mom and dad. They knew exactly what they wanted, and Target provided gloves, socks, hair brush for mom, CD for dad.

Mini photo albums:
This was a first for us, but it was so much fun I’ll make it a yearly tradition! I printed out photos of both girls that I took during 2008 and each one made a photo album. We used double stick tape to attach the photos (no messy glue fingers allowed), and now the albums sit wrapped under the tree waiting for that special moment when mom and dad open them. Michaela kept saying, “this is so much fun!” It brought back memories, and lots of laughs.

And on the 24th we will see the San Francisco Ballet’s version of the nutcracker! This is our first time to go! At the price of tickets this will not be a yearly tradition, but one I hope we’ll always remember. I have my own little ballerina right here!

Happy Holiday Traditions everyone! Share some of yours!



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  • My LIttle Family: - I’m convinced they moved Christmas up a week this year! I have to finish shopping today, not to mention mailing. My doggies feel abandoned. VickieReplyCancel

  • Stasia - I used the no-fail sugar cookie recipe from, and it was excellent. The cookies didn't need any frosting, and had great flavor – very much like shortbread. The dough was wonderful to work with – even for me, a novice.

    I substituted a bit of this flavoring for the vanilla extract; it made the cookies have an orange-vanilla flavor:

  • Jackie - What fun you had with your granddaughters. I love the piggy bank tradition and it ends up in a great gift. You all look like you had a great time. Merry Christmas to you and your family!ReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - My granddaughters will be here later today for our annual cookie baking. We will be using a recipe from the Kraft Foods website. Sugar Cookie Cutouts. It has cream cheese in the dough and is yummy and easy. We will also bake a crisy sugar cookie that is great, but more complicated because it has more ingredients. I love this day! Hugs, GwenReplyCancel

  • PamKittyMorning - Merry Christmas sweet Anne! xopReplyCancel

  • Anne - We used good ol Pillsbury premade dough. Cookie cutters came from toy dept at Tar-shey boutique. For a 2 year old….it was good enough. LOL. The girls are darling!ReplyCancel

  • Diane - What a lovely post. Creating memories like these with your family is the best gift of all.ReplyCancel

  • KSedlak - Except for a foot and a half of snow and lights around the front porch, it doesn’t feel like Christmas will be here in two days.
    Ok, you gave out some great ideas for traditions that I may do as well. I have a grandson coming in March. (Our first grandchild) I like the piggy bank savings and the photo album. The baking is a no brainer, something I have always loved to do. Thanks so much for sharing your granddaughters and traditions.
    Have fun and Merry Christmas.

  • Femin Susan - It is a great pleasure to have met your blog.It is tooooo good for words.Thanks for sharing.Wishing you advance a
    Merry Chirstmas and a happy new year.ReplyCancel

  • Angela (Cottage Magpie) - Just stopping by to say Merry Christmas! And if you don’t mind me saying, my sugar cookie recipe is fantastic! It’s on my blog. Hope you have a great holiday!
    ~Angela :-)ReplyCancel

  • Red Geranium Cottage - How fun to have two grand daughters to share tradtitions with. They are too cute. And what a beautiful ballerina you have there.
    Merry Christmas!ReplyCancel

  • Minick and Simpson - Merry Christmas! The girls are gorgeous.

    Polly & LaurieReplyCancel

  • Elizabeth - What beautiful Christmas memories you are making for your granddaughters! Have a wonderful Christmas, Anne!ReplyCancel

  • Simply This and That - Merry Christmas Anne! Love the pics of your grand daughters and the fun traditions you are keeping with them. Very cool. ;o) Hope you have a Wonderful Holiday! ooxx`jodiReplyCancel

  • Andrea - My sisters went to the SF Ballet nutcracker today too! I wonder if you were at the same showing.

    Merry Christmas to you and your family Anne – thank you for a wonderful year of inspiration and gorgeous photos. I am looking to following along with you in 2009!ReplyCancel

  • Miss Jean - Merry Christmas Anne. Have fun with those beautiful girls today.

  • mascanlon - My dear granddaughter is 9 mos. old today. I look forward to creating all these memories with her in the years to come! So do you know Alicia Paulson? In her new book she has the sweetest doll she made as a remembrance for her niece on their first trip to the Nutcracker
    Wouldn’t that be a nice surprise for the girls to remember your outing? Merry Christmas!ReplyCancel

  • brigette - look at those darling girls!!! sounds like hours of fun. i love the books you made with the girls. and taking them shopping. and the baking. you’re wonderful!!! i’ll gladly give you an excellent sugar cookie recipe.ReplyCancel

  • Jean - Anne, I was just back tracking a bit and re-read your post about the cookies! My SIL (one of 7!) makes great sugar cookies! She used to make them for what ever reason she could come up with! Here is her recipe; enjoy!

    Sugar Cookies
    2 cups sugar
    1 cup margarine

    2 eggs; beaten
    1 tsp vanilla
    1/2 tsp salt
    1 cup buttermilk or milk w/1 tsp.vinegar
    1 tsp soda
    2 tsp baking powder
    6 cups flour /plus a bit more to roll out dough.
    Mix all ingreds; dough will be soft! This makes for ease in handling and re-rolling extra’s.
    Roll out and cut into cookies
    Bake 400 degree’s about 5 mins. or til golden on bottom.
    Frost em if you got em!!!! EnjoyReplyCancel

  • Ginny - What a wonderful blog! I love all of your posts! I told my daughter about your piggy bank tradition, she and I both think it is a wonderful idea and we are going to do it this year!
    Thank you!ReplyCancel