Wednesday, December 2, 2015

It's A Holiday Tradition

Making Candy With The Kids

My two teens don't need any coaxing for this tradition.  They help me make candy, cookies and other goodies. We give it to neighbors, take it to work functions, and have it on hand for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day events. Some years, I even let them invent their own candy. Yep, leave it to them to come up with Doo-Doo one year. {Little boys!}  Some of our favorites are White Chocolate Dipped Peanut Butter Ritz, Puppy Chow, Candied Pecans, Honeycomb Candy, Cornflake Balls, Haystacks, Chocolate Peanut Clusters, and Yee Haw Toffee.  You name it and we've probably made it.  Oh, and eaten it!

Yee Haw Toffee is a fairly recent addition.  Try it!  It's easy and delicious.



The Official Countdown

We've had this chalkboard in our house forever.  It's pretty beat up and needs a fresh coat of chalkboard paint.  It hangs in the exact same spot every year.  It's funny when your decorations find a home, you can't change it.  It's tradition!  My youngest is still in charge of counting down the days.




Collecting Ornaments

I started this tradition on our honeymoon years ago.  I buy an ornament from every place we visit.  It brings back wonderful memories when I see them hanging on our tree.  I've missed a few places because I just couldn't find one, or they looked so hideous I couldn't put them on my tree.  I do have standards, well somewhat. 

New York, NY                    Williamsburg, VA                    St. John, USVI



New Traditions 

My parents are both long gone and I still miss some of the old traditions we had.  But, I think it's good to start new ones as new generations come along. Last year, my grandson came over and we built a gingerbread house. We also took him to look at tacky Christmas lights...one of my favorite things to do! Naturally, Mojo became a bit obsessed with our house.






What is one of your holiday traditions?

 
I'm linking up with Deb @ Deb Runs for the Wednesday Word.



Please visit Deb and the other participating bloggers.  It's fun!















50 comments:

  1. My dogs would not just politely stare; they would devour.

    I buy mugs from everywhere I travel to, and I use them every day. A different one, of course. I have my standards too: not a tacky tourist mug; I have to really like it; and preferably made in the state/country I'm visiting.

    I've got quite the collection and I really need to figure out how to display some without them getting destroyed by animals (a few have already met that fate over the years).

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    1. Mojo was only being good because I was watching him. Had I turned my back...

      I like to collect coffee mugs as well. I don't have an extensive collection though.

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  2. Mojo is adorable!

    My MIL used to make a toffee very much like yours (until she became gluten free) -- seeing your recipe made me want to whip up a batch!

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    1. It's easy enough and different from what we usually make.

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  3. Like you, I have an ornament from every place I have visited. I think putting those ornaments on the tree is my most favorite holiday tradition!

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    1. I only added three to my collection this year, I think. We didn't do as much traveling. Maybe next year!

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  4. I love baking cookies with my daughter! Well, it's better now that she's getting older. We also get her an ornament each year based on what she's interested in. Last year it was Frozen, one year it was Tinkerbell, and this year she's learned to write her name so I found an etsy seller that would put the image of her handwritten name on an ornament. It turned out really well!

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    1. My mother in law takes care of the yearly ornaments for all of her grandkids. That is a nice tradition too!

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  5. That dog pic! Priceless! I used to bake like a fiend but I ate like a fiend too so I curbed my enthusiasm. We build a gingerbread house and do a lights walk and drive. Holidays are so much fun plus they deflect from our awful weather at this time of year.

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    1. I'm not sure why he is having a staring contest with the house. He is weird anyway. I spend a lot of time trying to get rid of the candy after I make it. I hide it, which helps me forget about it too.

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  6. We've had a gingerbread house decorating throwdown competition for the last several years, which has been a blast. Not sure what will happen this year as we're starting a new tradition by going to our oldest kid's place for Christmas, several states away. I wonder what he'll plan for us?

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    1. When the kids get older, it sure does change the traditions. But I'm OK with that. It's fun to start new ones too.

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  7. I love the elf chalkboard! I love gingerbread decorating

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    1. One of these days, I'm going to make the gingerbread house from scratch...not. I love to watch it on HGTV though.

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  8. I love the chalkboard, so cute. I have yet to start the gingerbread house tradition! And Yee Haw Toffee sounds delish!

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    1. The best gingerbread "house" my own kids ever made was the tree. They are easier to assembly and fun to decorate. We did the train a couple of times too.

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  9. Candy making! How cool!!

    I was just thinking about how to creat something small and decorative to countdown to X-mas. I might be heading to the craft store tonight.

    I have always wanted to do the gingerbread house....maybe I can find that at the craft store too.

    Ornaments-great idea! I use to try to collect ones with the date and a space for pictures but I stopped :(

    Lovely traditions!

    Tamieka@fitballingrunningmom

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    1. I can't wait to hear (or see) what you create with the chalk board! This came from a school fundraiser years ago. We always enjoyed decorating the ginger bread trees too.

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  10. Look at your chalkboard ... you can see the tradition smeared all over it :) Love it

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    1. Very true! Lots of years of writing and erasing.

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  11. Candy making sounds like a FANTASTIC tradition. LOLOLOLOLOL at the "doodoo."

    I'm a big fan of buying a little keepsake from every (or almost every) place that I visit while traveling, too! It must be so fun to look at your Christmas tree and see the collection grow from the years, with all the associated memories.

    The picture of Mojo staring at the gingerbread house is just adorable!

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    1. I have to say, it looked like doo-doo! I'm not big on collecting things, except the ornaments. It's fun to get them out as I forget about a lot of them. I have tons of Mickey Mouse head-shaped ornaments!

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  12. I've never made toffee from saltines. I should try that this Christmas!

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    1. Isn't that weird? It works though. Very yummy.

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  13. Can I come to your house and help make candy? Even though I love to cook and bake but I end up making a total mess!

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    1. Of course you can! I can't promise we won't make a huge mess though.

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  14. Mojo is so cute!
    I love haystacks, mmmm. I have not had them in years.
    I like your ornament collection/idea :) I don't really have any traditions... it is strange that nothing has really stuck through the years.

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    1. Nobody likes butterscotch but me, so I have to give away the haystacks! Ornaments are really the only thing I've ever collected.

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  15. These are some great traditions! My mom used to have this beautiful ornament that was an angel made of sugar in white and blue. Apparently I figured that out and I would lick the ornament. She would hide it and I would find it and eventually she had to throw it out because it was just a misshapen lump of sugar smeared with blue. I vaguely recall this but am often reminded of it!

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    1. OMG. That is hilarious! Surely she couldn't expect an ornament made of sugar to stay un-licked.

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  16. it's funny (and SO real) how you notice that certain decorations always go in the same place. Yep. And I have a hard time buying new things (sometimes) because I'm not sure where to put them, because every square inch of "available" space is already taken LOL

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    1. LOL. I often think I don't have enough space to sit things on at Christmas. One year I took pics of all of my "displays" so I could easily go back to them and repeat them the next year. It makes it so much easier now. No thinking involved.

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  17. I love collecting ornaments from places we visit, it gives the tree a fun theme! My house is the same way with decorations, there are certain things that have to go in the same spot every year, it just does. I like the candy idea, how do I get on the list? Need an address? :)

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    1. MB, if I thought it wouldn't melt...cause I need that stuff out of the house after a while.

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  18. What a fun topic, I hate I missed it. My family has lots of traditions to, mostly little things. Psss, I think I'm gonna break one though this year. Greg and I are thinking of spending Christmas away. Yup just us. I have my daughters blessing, the only one I care to have, but yea, we are waiting to see what the weather looks like but leaning towards Branson. We'll see. If I got an ornament from everywhere we've been just this year alone I'd have a tree full. We didn't buy the first thing in Disney this year either, besides some food. That is really rare!

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    1. I've been to Branson once. I think I was the youngest person in the city at the time! LOL. It was fun. I bought an ornament for each of my kids but they don't say Branson. Uh-oh, now I need to go back! You should see the haul of Disney ornaments I have. I could do a Disney tree!

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  19. Candy making - what fun! Love your NY ornament.

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    1. That apple is one of my favorite ornaments. It's wooden! The 2nd time I visited NYC, I couldn't find one I liked -- so I didn't buy one.

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  20. Great traditions with your kids! As you saw in my last weekly wrap we do our yearly gingerbread house. We also bake cookies, to leave out for Santa. :)

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    1. I saw that. Have you ever tried the gingerbread trees? I like those even better. I used to do the cookie thing too.

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  21. Mojo looks like he'd like to move into that gingerbread house, and eat his way out! :-)

    As always, thanks for linking up!

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    1. Oh, he would have if I hadn't been watching. He has no shame in getting on the table!

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  22. We always go out hiking, sledding and Christmas tree hunting and make an afternoon of it in the hills. So much fun with the kids! and the dog too :)

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    1. We like to snow ski, but sledding is something I've never done! I'll have to put that on my bucket list.

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  23. Having ornaments from each of the places you visit is a neat tradition! We don't do that, but each of the ornaments on our tree have some significance - they're not just there for decoration! Most of our decorations go in the same spot every year, including our advent calendar that hangs on the wall. It's fun to have a Christmas countdown hanging on the wall that you get to look at every day.

    Your dog is too cute! Y'all should definitely do a gingerbread house again this year to see if he has the same reaction.

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    1. I also use many of the ornaments that the kids made when they were tots. So, most of what is on the tree has significance or memories. Honestly, Mojo has that reaction to any thing sitting on the kitchen table. LOL.

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  24. How much do I love that pic of your dog staring at the gingerbread house??? ha ha ha. That chalkboard is super cute and a great idea. That Yee Haw toffee sounds really good. I'm going to tackle my Christmas baking this weekend so I may give that a whirl. I have most of the ingredients on hand anyway!

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    1. Actually that is Mojo's reaction to any food item. LOL. I have to watch him like a hawk. He has no shame in getting on that table! That toffee is different and easy. Try it!

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  25. I'm baking this weekend, but other than that all Christmas activities will have to wait until next weekend. Then I will be in a panic about getting everything done ....

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    1. It's funny how everything manages to get done whether I start early or late, or whether I am in a panic or not. I would just prefer a stress free holiday.

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