Candy Cane Wishes and Mistletoe Kisses…getting in the holiday spirit one candy at a time

For me and my family, holidays and eating are almost synonymous. Especially when it comes to baking for Christmas. Every year we are up to our ears in Christmas cookies, rocky road candies, and gingerbread houses. It seems that in the south the only way we know how to celebrate is with food. It also seems to be the first way we show our love and appreciation toward the people in our life. All of our excess cookies we walk over to share with the neighbors across the street, or have my dad share with his coworkers at the office. Though I haven’t been reunited with my family yet for the Christmas celebrations, I decided to start a little early this year. I tried a new recipe tonight that a friend tagged me in on Facebook-Pretzel Peppermint Bark. I got home from a festive seasonal celebration Christmas concert and decided to continue my Christmas festivities with some spur of the moment baking. I had no desire to eat all the dessert myself (okay, well maybe a little, but I used the tiny bit of self control I have to only try a bite), and was already brainstorming all the people I could share my tasty treats with. I get so excited thinking about my friends’ reactions when they try the fruits of my labor. Sharing is one of my favorite things about cooking delicious foods. Cooking in my cozy little kitchen reminded me how much I love doing that, and also pointed to the unique aspect of the upcoming holiday-giving. How wonderful is it to have a holiday where we can show our love for others by giving thoughtful gifts to one another. Even if it is just something simple we took the time to bake. We can get caught up in the stress and mayhem of crossing all the items off our shopping list (and believe me I already have…I spent an hour in the line at Bath and Body Works yesterday trying to take advantage of the sales), and we forget the reason we put ourselves through all of that. Because we received the ultimate gift in a humble manger on Christmas morning, we are inspired to share with those around us. It can be as simple as baking some Christmas cookies for them. So after I finished making my Christmas candy, I continued my festivities by wrapping Christmas gifts and writing Christmas cards for my friends I won’t be seeing this holiday season. It’s amazing how small things like that could brighten up someone’s day, or even their entire Christmas season. I encourage you to take time this week to brainstorm some small things you can do for the people around you to make their holiday a little brighter.

 

 

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Here’s the recipe I made tonight! Super easy and delicious! Great for teacher and friend gifts!

Pretzel Peppermint Bark
INGREDIENTS

2 1/2 c. pretzels

1/2 c. crushed candy canes

DIRECTIONS
  1. Line a medium sheet tray with parchment paper. Melt Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Chips in microwave in 30-second intervals, then pour chocolate on sheet tray and spread into an even layer.
  2. Top with pretzels and candy canes then refrigerate until hardened, 30 minutes.
  3. Break into pieces to serve.

(recipe from Rian Handler at delish)

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