Five Little Things

Five Little Things I loved the week of December 16, 2023: cookie exchanges, family visits, candy canes, and more!

Five Little Things

Hey, friends! The holiday crunch is upon us; how are you faring? I am in the ticking-off-the-checkbox mode and trying to remind myself to breathe deeply and enjoy the season. That means going more frequently to yoga, which I think is very helpful! I hope you’re finding ways to keep the true spirit of Christmas alive. Here are Five Little Things I loved this week:

1. Christmas Cookies

For over ten years, local friends I have made through this world of food blogging have gathered for a holiday brunch and cookie exchange, and this year, I was happy to host our annual tradition. I made my Kale Persimmon Salad, Pot Pie (this recipe is what I used, but I swapped the ham for chicken), marinated olives, a Charcuterie Board, and a spicy feta dip that I plan to share with you soon (stay tuned for the recipe!).

As for the cookies, I made Cinnamon Bun Cookies – they’re pretty fun to make and can be found in The King Arthur Baking Essential Cookie Companion (affiliate link). Relatedly, if you’re curious about this cookbook, check out my podcast episode with Editorial Director David Tamarkin.

If you’re looking for some cookie inspiration, some favorites that I’ve made for previous cookie exchanges include Coconut Shortbread Cookies, Alfajores, Dorie Greenspan’s World Peace Cookies, Cinnamon Toffee Butterhorns (Rugelach), Cranberry Nut Butterhorns (Rugelach), and Authentic Pizzelle.

2. Family Visits

My mother-in-law was in town last week! It was so good to have some one-on-one time with her. We took her to a winery, strolled through a local garden, and took a yoga class together. It reminded me of our cruise to Mexico and all the fun we had together, just the two of us!

3. An Oldie But Goodie

I came across this old commercial the other day. While I’m pretty sure I’ve shared it with you once before, it was so sweet I had to share it again.

4. Peppermint Candy Canes

The process of making peppermint candy canes is mesmerizing, and the candy maker at Logan’s Candies is quite the showman!

5. The Best Part

I wish we all could see the magic of Christmas through this little boy’s eyes. I love how excited he is about his role in the Nativity play!

Stay joyful!



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  1. Jane

    Such beautiful selections Liren, each one brought a smile to my face! Have a lovely holiday season and a very Merry Christmas!

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