Sunday, December 17, 2017

12 Days of Christmas: Day 3...Edaville Railroad ♥

Hello Friends! Thank you for joining me for Day 3 of my 12 Days of Christmas series.  Today I'm going to share with you one of our favorite places to visit during the Christmas season :
We actually visited here tonight.  We got home about an hour ago and my fingers and toes are still thawing out.  It was very coooold this evening. But we had so much fun! Some traditions you just can't break no matter how cold it is. 
Edaville Railroad is a little theme park located in Carver, MA - about an hour from my house.  I call it little because it's by no means massive.  It's on the smaller side and feels very quaint to me.  During the spring and summer the train runs and it has amusements and water slides.  But in the winter this place transforms into Christmasville, USA.  Oh, and did I mention that Thomas the tank engine lives here! 

Walking into the park there are quaint little gift shops.  It reminds me of a Dickens village ♥

Once you enter the festival of lights begins.  It never gets old.  I remember coming here when I was little and I'm taken right back there when I see all the lights. 

We always go a week or two before Christmas and it's ALWAYS cold.  Tonight we may have broken a record. 
But it was worth it ♥
Here's a few pictures taken just as we arrived, before the sun went down....
Entering Thomas Land section of the park.  John always loved Thomas. 
He still holds a special place in his heart ♥
mine too...

That's a spinning Toby ride that I refused to go on....John's on it : )


We couldn't leave Thomas Land without a ride on Thomas.  It's cozy warm and an opportunity to see more lights. 
By this time it was getting dark which makes the lights more magical. 

From my window....

There are plenty of other places to warm up. Like indoor bumper cars!

A candy shop we spent way too much time in : )
And of course....
A café with steaming hot hot chocolate ♥
The best warm up of all!
This place is a tradition for us. I'm so glad we went!
Please check back tomorrow as I continue the 12 Days of Christmas with another favorite of mine.  And don't forget to check out my friend Billie Jo's blog and her daughter Madison's blog to see their favorites too!
Have a great day! 
See you tomorrow! xo

Saturday, December 16, 2017

The 12 days of Christmas: Day Two...Cinnamon Buns ♥

Today I'm taking about Cinnamon Buns....not the kind you think : )
Hello and welcome back to the 12 days of Christmas, where everyday I'll be sharing a fun, festive, Christmas favorite.  We are on day 2 today and I want to tell you about something I love! 
Cinnamon Buns ♥  Specifically, Cinnamon Buns shower gel from Philosophy. 
Every year when I'm Christmas shopping I end up picking up a few things for myself along the way.  Most often they are treats or indulgences that I don't usually splurge on during the year.  One of these treats is always Cinnamon Buns! I first tried it many years ago on a whim because I LOVED the smell.  It literally smells like you are baking fresh cinnamon rolls.  It's divine!  And the best part is that this shower gel leaves your skin feeling soft and moisturized.  It's truly luxurious!  Especially during the cold winter months, which is why a big bottle of this always ends up in my stocking! Philosophy are masters of skin care and fragrance.  And even though I think $18 is a little pricey for shower gel, this one is totally worth it.  After all, Mrs. Claus deserves some TLC, don't you think? I do! And thankfully, so does Mr. Claus! ♥
Please check back tomorrow to see day 3!
Happy Friday Everyone!  Enjoy you weekend!  ♥♥♥

Friday, December 15, 2017

The 12 days of Christmas...Day one: Peppermint Mocha ♥


Hello Everyone! Happy Friday!  Can you believe we are under two weeks till the big day? I'm so excited!  Thanks to my friend Billie Jo and her daughter Madison, I'm going to be participating in a 12 days of Christmas series.  For the next 12 days I will be posting a "short, simple, festive Christmas favorite". I know technically the 12 days of Christmas start on December 25th, but just for fun I thought I would start now, and according to my calculations this series will take me right past Christmas day.  It's going to be fun, so let's begin.
Day One...
How could I start anywhere but here ♥
Sometime in November I turn in my beloved pumpkin spice for peppermint mocha. I put this cream in my coffee every morning.  It's my absolute favorite for the winter.  So creamy and "pepperminty".  To me, this taste like Christmas! It's not available at any other time expect holiday time.  I think that's why I enjoy it so much.  I look forward to it and savor every sip until it goes away again. 
It's also pretty amazing in hot chocolate! Just sayin....♥
The weather here has been absolutely freezing. I take my coffee to go in the morning.  There is nothing like a sip of hot peppermint mocha on a cold and frosty morning.  Makes my ride to work a little bit more bearable.  Or curling up on the couch at night while the Christmas tree lights twinkle,  to watch The Crown (are you watching? I hope so!!! : )  with a cup of hot chocolate - peppermint mocha style.  So warm and cozy.
Thank you as always for joining me today! Please check back every day for the next 12 days to share with me another Christmas favorite!
Feel free to join in by posting your 12 days of Christmas! I would love to see them! And don't forget to hop over to  Billie Jo's blog (here) and Madison's blog (here) to see what wonderful things they are up to as well!
Happy Friday and Happy 12 Days of Christmas! ♥

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Peppermint Fudge ♥

While I was binging on episodes of the Pioneer Woman this weekend, I saw this recipe for peppermint fudge.  It looked so festive and delicious I thought it might be nice for Christmas eve so naturally I had to "test it". 
Only two ingredients....three if you count the peppermints.  I've made fudge in the past and it's always been a process.  A lot stirring and adding ingredients.  This method looked so simple.  And who doesn't love fudge?
All you need is 3 cups of chocolate chips,  a 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk, and 7-8 peppermint candies...
Crushed  ♥ 
Combine the chocolate chips and condensed milk in a double boiler over med heat.  Heat until melted, about 5-7 minutes. 
Cook until the chocolate is nice and smooth...
The smell is insane! My entire kitchen smelled like chocolate. 
I felt like Mrs. Clause ♥
 No lumps ♥
Immediately pour into a foil lined square baking dish.
(I sprayed mine with non stick spray as well just to be safe)
Sprinkle with candy!
Now refrigerate for 2 hours. 
Once set, cut into squares. 
So easy and so delicious!
 We all loved this fudge so much I'm definitely adding it to our holiday festivities!   
We are under two weeks until the big day!  I'm feeling really good.  I mailed all my cards and packages on Monday! That's a major milestone in holiday prep for me.  I won't even talk about how I had to wait in line for 30 minutes at the post office because they only had one person at the counter and the line was out the door.  No biggie.  So glad I had this fudge at home. 
Chocolate is my coping mechanism ♥
Happy Wednesday! xo
 "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...everywhere you go"....

Sunday, December 10, 2017

My weekend ♥

We had our first snow on Saturday!  It started late morning and continued until sometime during the night.  On my way to bed I looked out the window and it was still going strong.  Since it was Saturday we didn't have to go anywhere or do anything.  I love snow storms when it's a weekend and I don't have to drive anywhere. We were all home, cozy warm, drinking hot chocolate, as the snow fell.  I stayed in sweat pants all day.  It was soooo nice!
When I woke up Sunday morning the sun was out and everything was covered in marshmallow fluff!

The last of autumn's roses are now snow covered.  I love seeing flowers in the snow. 
The miracle of the seasons ♥
View from my second floor window this morning. 
Hello snowy world.  Winter has arrived! ♥
I wrote out all my Christmas cards on Saturday.  Something I really love to do.  And what better time to do it than a snowy sweat pants.  Perfection!
This weekend  I also watched a lot of Food Network! (as usual : )
I was inspired to make a fudge recipe from The Pioneer Woman. 
It came out so good!!!!  I'll share the recipe this week.
Here's a sneak peek.....

John and Rob were at church while I made it.  By the time they came home I had cleaned everything up, but the first thing John said to me was "mommy, you smell like chocolate chips".  I took that as a major compliment! ♥ LOL
Tonight we headed over to my in laws for dinner to celebrate my father in laws birthday.  We arrived a little early and my mother in law  made us coffee in these cute little owl mugs! 
Could you just..... ♥
 I want to show you how beautifully my mother in law decorates for the holidays.
She truly has a knack for it.....
How cozy is this?
Isn't the mantle gorgeous?! 
I could have made a meal on the appetizers, but it's a good thing I didn't.  She made homemade pasta!  It literally melts in your mouth! 
This was followed by a roasted pork loin, potatoes, veggies, and of course dessert. 
 Two espressos later and I'm still awake, but I don't care.  It was worth it!  :)
A lovely end to a lovely weekend. 
I'm afraid to say tomorrow is Monday as time marches on....
This weeks to-do list consists of a trip to the post office, wrapping presents, and organizing my wallet - which is currently a mess of papers and receipts! 
I hope you all have a great day! Only two weeks till Christmas!
We are getting closer and closer....♥