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Pull Up A Chair…


The Peanut and I made graham cracker "gingerbread man" houses this week.  (As she calls them, anyway.)  It was almost as much fun putting the decorations on with some frosting cement as it was eating nibbles of the decorations.  And it is very easy to do — for directions, check here — and I managed to save myself a little time by using some leftover frosting from a can that I had used to ice the snowman cookies we made earlier in the week.

Let's just say that we had one very cheery Peanut, covered with a bit of frosting and sprinkles by the time we were finished.

This turned out to be a very fun project, so I thought I'd share the idea with everyone else who might have kids or grandkids about to descend on their home and in dire need of something to do that doesn't involve laying around and staring at the presents as a means to will the wrapping right off them before Christmas morning.  As a firm believer in fun but easy on momma art projects, this one is really a winner.

And speaking of a crowded house full of holiday guests and such, I'm betting that there are a lot of folks reading this morning who could use some tips on easy guest entertainment.  Over the years, I've perfected the art of entertaining on the fly, and trying to make it look as though you'd been cooking all day.  Here are a few of my holiday faves to keep you going — with the least amounf of fuss possible.

Christmas morning cinnamon rolls:  I love these rolls.  I make them every year, and they could not be easier.  Bless the person, whoever you are, who originally sent me the recipe.

— Christmas Eve up all night putting toys together snacktravaganza idea:  Goat cheese, served with triscuits and spiced peach butter or apple butter (or cream cheese and pepper jelly and crackers).

— Great hot artichoke dip:  package of Friday's frozen dip, cut up cream cheese, quartered artichokes hearts in brine, drained and cut in smaller pieces, all mixed together and microwaved until hot.  Serve with baguette slices or crackers.

There are lots and lots more easy ideas — for drop by guests and long-staying family and the like — on the Food Network website and lots of other places.   I thought we could all share a bit of cheer this morning — along with some ideas that will give you more time to prop up your tired-from-the-blasted-mall feet.  Which means you can sit back, have that second slice of Aunt Betty's fruitcake with your coffee and pull up a chair…

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Christy Hardin Smith

Christy Hardin Smith

Christy is a "recovering" attorney, who earned her undergraduate degree at Smith College, in American Studies and Government, concentrating in American Foreign Policy. She then went on to graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania in the field of political science and international relations/security studies, before attending law school at the College of Law at West Virginia University, where she was Associate Editor of the Law Review. Christy was a partner in her own firm for several years, where she practiced in a number of areas including criminal defense, child abuse and neglect representation, domestic law, civil litigation, and she was an attorney for a small municipality, before switching hats to become a state prosecutor. Christy has extensive trial experience, and has worked for years both in and out of the court system to improve the lives of at risk children.

Email: reddhedd AT firedoglake DOT com