Lots to talk about. Lots to share. I’ll start with the cookies.

It has been an annual tradition (5 years running at this point) for me to bake Christmas goodies and pass them out to friends. It’s the alternative to buying gifts for everyone and I think most people probably appreciate a bag of edible goodies more than a random trinket.

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This is what went into the goodie bags (minus the cranberry bliss bars). I made peanut butter chocolate mud buddies, peppermint mud buddies, pumpkin spiced almonds, spicy chocolate biscotti, maple walnut fudge, pretzel melts, coconut cookies, gingerbread cookies (failed attempt at gingerbread whoopie pies) and snowflake sugar cookies. I also made banana, apple and carrot dog biscuits for those friends with pups.

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I ended up making a whole tray of gingerbread whoopie pies and giving them to my stepson (“The Teenager”) to take to youth group that night. I was actually so mad at the recipe (found on pinterest) that I was going to trash the whole tray. I did taste it and the flavor was pretty good. My issue was the filling just didn’t hold up. It was waaaayyyy too loose. So, instead of wasting my failure, I opted to pawn it off on The Teenager.

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Here’s the kicker, guys… He came back with an empty tray. Apparently my failure didn’t do too bad at youth group.

*ahem* Yay God!

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The cranberry bliss bars are delightful, though they need to be refrigerated because the cream cheese frosting.

Instead of my regular go-to for holiday cookie recipes (ie: betty crocker Holiday Cookie .. Christmas 2014 Edition) I decided to take my search to Pinterest. About 4 years ago, a friend of mine shared her obsession with Pinterest with me and I went online and perused the aisles of photos and the glory that is Pinterest.

And I didn’t get it. I just didn’t understand how anyone could spend hours on this site .. pinning things. Pinning pictures. Pinning recipes. Pinning outdoor table setting designs. Pinning the most adorable puppy pictures you will ever see in your entire life.

Needless to say, I get it now.

I also made kimchi this past weekend. I found the recipe on Pinterest.

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I have no idea how this is going to turn out but it sure looked right.

Yeah. I totally get it now.

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Remember when I last posted to the blog .. I talked about possibly doing IVF? Well, this past May I went up to Walter Reed Army Medical Center to try it out. It didn’t stick. I take it back. It did stick but then it unstuck. huh?

It is a lengthy and expensive process but for some people it is their only alternative. We may try again next year and hopefully before I turn 39. OH boy. Thirty Nine. Yikes.

As I near the big 4-0 I consider more and more the possibility of never having a child of my own. Most days I don’t even think about having one because my life is pretty good as it is and I always have Dante as my stand-in child. Unfortunately, I know Dante won’t be here forever and he will pass long before me.

We have the Teenager living with us right now and he’s a good kid. He’s made huge strides in school and life and we are very proud of him.

TG already has two boys of his own. Don’t get me wrong. He has been very supportive. He is a part of the whole process. For that, I am grateful. Having said that, I believe he is perfectly happy with his life and isn’t necessarily looking to add to the family.  Thankfully he understands how important it is for me to try. Again. One Last time.

I think.

Thanks for reading!

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