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Friday, December 21, 2012

Crunch Day

So, today is it, huh? End of the world. It’s gray and windy and 34 degrees, which is almost the predicted high for today, but it just doesn’t seem apocalypsy. So I am going to continue as if the world won’t end today. There’s just too much to cram in tomorrow if it doesn’t end.

Nothing makes me quite as crazy as things being behind and I am behind. After this post I’ll probably have another cup of coffee, no schnapps before noon, but by noon I might be tempted! Today will be crostadas and cleanup for tomorrow night. I’m not overly worried about that. I’ll get it done on time. Just right now out tree has half the lights on it and no ornaments. If the tree is only partially done, I’ll live with that. No one really sees anything but the glow of the lights while we’re enjoying each other’s company anyway. What’s making me unravel is that our Christmas Cards aren’t out yet and while they may get put in the mailbox before, they won’t get anywhere by Christmas. So, if you usually see a card from us, you still will, it’ll just be a “Hope you’re still enjoying the holidays” wish rather than a “Have a happy holiday.”

Still, I grumble inside for what I can’t do to help keep us on schedule for the holidays. I’m considering toning things down for next year. Oh, I’ll still bake and still do the fabulous dessert bar, but I’m pondering asking someone else to host the venue. Maybe do the party in Michigan next year instead of here. It’s the combination of baking and cleaning/getting the house ready for guests that’s making me nuts. So maybe I need to outsource the location.

Our Christmas Bat under the mistletoe

I have officially composed the Friendly Beasts verse for the Christmas Bat. I was mistaken about his eating mosquitos at the First Christmas. I created the story of the Christmas Bat; I can change it if it works better. This does!

I said the bat that flies at night.
I outstretched my wings so he could sleep tight
I shadowed his eyes ‘cause that star was so bright.
I said the bat that flies at night.

There ya go; the Christmas Bat got between the star and the Baby so he could sleep, but everyone else knew where he was.


I sent out some Davinities boxes in the mail this year. I promised that I’d tell about this year’s offerings on my blog, so here are the Davinities gift-box treats for 2012:

Krisp Kringles
The Original Davinity

This year’s Kringles are crunchy peanut butter and butterscotch rice squares. The compressed and cut preparation holds it shape better, therefore ships and travels better.
Mr. Goodcookies

This is the traveling Davinity and the one that I make for other occasions through the year, including that it’s the one I packaged for the Paws and Whiskers bake sale in September. They are crushed Mr. Goodbar, milk chocolate with peanuts, in a traditional tollhouse cookie base.

Chocolate Chunk Hazelnut Cookies

I created these especially for David. Well, you know, he’s going to put the Nani Bakery in his train layout, complete with a water tower! These are crushed hazelnuts and dark chocolate chunk cookies, each one garnished with a whole roasted hazelnut.

Pecan Pie Cookies

Back when my friend, Marie, had her baking business, Celebration Generation, up and running, I ordered cookies to augment my Davinities at Christmastime for the parties. When she closed Celebration Generation, she posted the recipes to her cookies on her Celebration Generation blog over time and I’ve been adding a different Celebration Generation recipe as one of the Davinities each year. Last Year it was the Black Forest Cookies and this Year it’s Pecan Pie cookies. They were one of my favorites of her cookies and I’m with the way they turned out from my oven too! There’s really not much to say that isn’t in the name. They are pecan pie filling in a brown sugar-based crust.

Ginger Bats and Bells (and Birds)

These ones are my favorite! I tried many different gingerbread recipes and finally found the right one. This is a semi-soft gingerbread cookie with cream cheese frosting. My opinion, it’s just the right balance of sweet and spicy and crunch and chewy. The ones that break between cooling and frosting get frosted too. I have to be able to taste to be sure they’re good right? Gingerbread is my favorite holiday cookie and while I pretty much like all gingerbread, I wanted mine to be my favorite; I succeeded.

Loaded Loaf

Back again from last year, loaded loaf is a great breakfast cake. The loaf is pumpkin-based with chocolate chips, walnuts and raisins. Experience from Christmas morning last year – a slice of loaf given a little time to toast up in a toaster oven with cinnamon butter is heaven!

And there’s the 2012 Davinities gift-box lineup. You can see the Celebration Generation Pecan Pie Cookie recipe here: Pecan Pie Cookies. Recipes for many of the regular Davinities are available at Simply Davlicious. Simply Davlicious will be getting an update with pictures and new recipes in 2013.


Debby@Just Breathe said...

Your baking looks so yummy! I am cleaning house today and will be baking on Sunday/Monday. We have no plans until Christmas Day. Later today I will wrap all the presents. Don't beat yourself up.
Your party will be fabulous and cards after Christmas get more attention, that's when we have time to actually look at them.
Praying you have a fabulous day and I would love to join you with the Schnapps :)


Those pecan pies 'sound' sinful and look heavenly rich!!!

Popping in really quick to leave you a happy Christmas and merry New year wish!!!

Ricki Ohana said...

Oh my, those are so good looking!
Merry Christmas :)

seamhead gypsy said...

Hey Nani...Thanks for our Davinities! Very, very tasty! Katie & Kathy both had some in their lunches this week. Katie doesn't always eat all of her lunch, but she ate her Davinities. I especially like the loaded loaf & the bat!
Have I got a Christmas card story to tell. I have always ordered our cards from snapfish. I ordered 4 different sets and 2 of them arrived. So I sent them out, you should have gotten yours. I still have 2 more sets to arrive and were supposed to have been here on the 18th. The tracking showed they left on the 13th, went to Columbus & Detroit on the 14th and down to Cincinnati on the 15th. And that is where the trail goes cold. Nothing. No one can tell me where they are at. But after last year, I think I know what happened. In conversation with snapfish I was told not to worry that they will arrive before Christmas on the 24th. I told them that was unacceptable as I could not get them out to family & friends prior to Christmas and asked for a refund. Denied. So I ordered happy new year cards from a competitor with an apology for my tardiness and explaining how I will never order anything from snapfish again. Last year after I received my order and mailed out my cards, I received another order the week before Christmas....but it wasn't my order! It was some other family of four and I had no clue who they were or where they lived. Snapfish didn't seem to understand that I had someone else's order and had no answer to what I should do with them. So I'm pretty sure my missing order is at someone else's house and they will throw them away.
Wish everyone a very Merry Christmas for me this weekend!

Edna B said...

Oh Nani, don't beat yourself up over what you cannot do. Just enjoy what you CAN do. If my tree were any bigger, it probably would not get put up every year. Instead, it's a 2 foot tree on my coffee table. Just as pretty, I might add.

You have baked up a storm, and I have to tell you that your Davinities tasted just heavenly. I already eaten the loaf and the Krisp Kringles. Even though the cookies are safely in their box, hidden behind the tree, I'm sure I will be creeping back there to unwrap another treat shortly. Mmmm, mmm,mmm!

As for belated greeting cards of all kinds, I think they are great because they extend the celebration a bit longer. So don't worry about late cards.

Good friends and family do not come to visit to check out the housekeeping, they come to be with you. I think you've done a fabulous job. So be good to yourself. What will be, will be. You have a wonderful day my friend. Hugs, Edna B.