It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Last weekend we hosted our 5th annual holiday party, one of my favorite seasonal traditions that always makes it really feel like the Christmas season. While some regular attendees couldn’t make it because they had conflicting plans, we were graced with the presence of two of our best friends (one also ran the Twin Cities Marathon with me) who moved to Minnesota this time last year. I never in a million years thought they’d be back this time of year and able to come to our party, so it was extra special!

Ornaments

I spent a lot of time last week decking the halls and baking and making merry to prepare for our guests. I love our apartment all the time, but I especially love it with our tree and holiday decorations!

Tree

I made three of my favorite cookies, Chocolate Chip with Walnuts and Cherries, Chewy Molasses Spice and Lemon Rosemary Thumbprints.

Cookies

I also made Ginger Spiced Pear Bread, which is absolutely divine. I first baked this for Thanksgiving and have made it a few times since. It gets devoured so quickly and is just delicious!

Bread

Mike was in charge of beverages and he whipped up a boozy punch that we topped with a little bubbly!

Punch

I love getting all of our Christmas decorations out of storage every year because they each hold such special memories. I made this wreath during a craft session Mike and I had at our first apartment together a few years ago. It took forever to make, but I’m glad to say it’s held up incredibly well to being stashed away each year.

Wreath

And of course we had to hang our stockings! Mine was made by a family friend after my beloved dog Yankee gnawed on my other one (I forgave him). I love the giant snowman! My mom found Mike’s at a vintage shop and we think it’s so cute. Though I get the sense that he’s jealous because mine is so much bigger. ;-)

Stockings

We’re both busy this week finishing up work for the year and finalizing our gifts for our families and each other. We have some travel planned in the next couple of weeks, plus some nice home time mixed in, culminating with a big dinner out on New Year’s Eve. It was nearly one year ago exactly that I had my last day at my office job and I really can’t believe how much time has passed. I’m going to be back again before the end of the year with an update on how my 2012 evolutions went and some goals for 2013.

I hope you’re having a lovely holiday season so far!

 

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