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December 09, 2012

We held our first Christmas party this weekend.  My sister-in-law, brother-in-law and their family came out along with my mom and the whole Cobble Hill crew.  The dogs were crazy, Jack thought everyone was here to celebrate him, Cait was quiet {who can compete with Oliver???} and the chickens laid eggs and fought for a little attention.  It was wonderful to see them.

I had planned on making the Vanilla ice cream and Dutch Apple Pie during the week but the week just flew by so I made them Saturday morning.  Jay plopped down at the kitchen bar, ate his cereal, and played 100 questions.  Not 20, 100.  Why do you put that in a separate bowl?  Why do you put the vanilla bean in the milk mixture?  Why can't you use the extract you made?  Where is the extract?  Can I see it?  Can I shake it?  Why does the ice cream maker make that noise?  Can you make peppermint bark too?  Can we make peppermint crunch ice cream tomorrow?  How long does the ice cream take?  So that's how you make that kind of pie?.......... and on and on.  I love him and love that he's interested but boy does it make for an interesting time!

I solved his question and answer time by putting him to work.  He was now going to be in charge of the ice cream.  He manned the ice cream maker, waiting for it to begin pulling away from the sides.  Once it did, I set up his containers and he worked diligently and carefully at packing them.  I noticed he also made sure to leave just enough in the ice cream maker that he could get a pretty good taste.  He declared "his" ice cream too good for anyone else to eat.

Speaking of the vanilla extract you may remember I made, it looks like it's getting close.  I'm planning on trying it in January.  I'll let you know how it turns out.  It smells wonderful!  Also, I'll be putting the Dutch Apple Pie recipe on this week.  I used apples from the local orchard and it was divine with a little homemade vanilla ice cream and a drizzle of salted caramel sauce!

The boys and Cait love the entry room which is where the pellet stove and the Christmas tree are.  Cait and Jackson think I purchased the tree skirt for them and love to roll around on it while reaching up and batting at the tree and it's lights.

My Christmas presents are all made {except some food items}or purchased, but not yet wrapped.  I just finished printing off the last of the newsletters for cards, so the last of the cards go in the mail tomorrow.  I enjoyed making a few new items so much I'll be making more but I can't share yet because I want it to be a complete surprise to those receiving it on Wednesday.

Tonight I'm beginning preparations for the next Christmas Party I'm holding on Wednesday.  I'm making homemade truffles as gifts - Oreo Cookie, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Cake Batter, Pumpkin, and I'm also going to try "Chubby Hubby" - just like the ice cream.

Have you tried any crockpot recipes from the "Crockin' Girls"?  I'm trying a chicken BBQ recipe tonight.  Fingers crossed it turns out well.  Crockpot recipes can definitely be hit or miss.
{**update - the chicken BBQ recipe did not turn out well - the chicken was dry and the sauce was not good.**}

Snow is in the air.  We have a winter weather advisory through tomorrow morning.  I wish it could have come today instead of tomorrow for the morning commute.

Hope you had a wonderful weekend!

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