Christmas S’mores

candy cane christmas s'mores: 3 ways

For our recent home tour, I set up a Christmas-themed s’mores and hot chocolate bar in our backyard. The set-up was just for display – we didn’t make any s’mores as part of the tour. The idea of candy cane s’mores, however, stayed with me well after the weekend was over. Yesterday, I decided to test out my theory that s’mores, combined with a bit of peppermint, would yield a pretty awesome treat. My recipe included graham crackers and marshmallows (broiled in the oven for a couple of minutes) topped with a small piece of peppermint bark. It was pretty amazing.

We used Williams-Sonoma peppermint bark, but you could also use crushed candy canes and chocolate or pieces of a Hershey’s candy cane bar.

Here are a few photos of the s’mores and hot chocolate station in our backyard:

make christmas s'mores

Snow Day

We had an ice storm last night in the DFW area. The kids were thrilled to wake up to a blanket of white over their entire yard, and they ventured out almost immediately to play in the snow. Unfortunately, the temperatures were still very low and they came inside almost just as immediately. For now, we’re bundled up by the fire, enjoying these views from the warmth of our home.

snow day in dfw

Simple/Fun: Felt Forests

We’ve been having lots of sick days at our house, and sick days for kids means work-from-home days for mom and dad. Trying to balance caring for – and entertaining – a sick child with conference calls and other work-related tasks isn’t easy, so I love when I find an activity that keeps Jason or Jenna independently engaged for a little bit of time. Felt Forests turned out to be just such an activity. All it takes is a big pile of triangles cut out of felt (older children can cut their own), a glue stick and paper or poster board.

Simple/Fun: Ice Lanterns

I came across this project on Pinterest that I’m definitely going to try when the temperatures get a bit cooler: ice lanterns.  Jason and Jenna loved freezing Star Wars Lego figures in ice this summer, so this is right up their alley. Now we just need a cool evening when we can sit out on the patio and watch as the candles slowly melt the ice.

Such a simple idea, but the results are incredibly beautiful. The one on the left is made using a balloon as the mold and the one on the right uses a bucket. Instructions and details from Willowday here and here.

A Penguin Playground and Other Pursuits

It’s been pretty low-key around here these past few days. We’ve been eating leftovers and chocolate, playing with our new toys and generally lounging about. But today I plan to get out of my pjs. I might even venture outside.

Along with the new Star Wars Legos, dollhouse and video games, we’ve also engaged in a few simpler activities, including building this marshmallow structure for Jenna’s tiny penguins. And then there were the red cups. I think a stack of plastic cups can keep my kids entertained longer than any toy.

Wish List: Snow Party

Today, we’re heading out to Gaylord Texas to go tubing in the snow. Indoor snow? Yes. I had thought fake snow would be the closest we could get in Texas for Christmas, but then I heard there’s a teeny, tiny chance of snow this weekend. Yay! You can bet that if there’s snow on the ground,  J+J will be out there celebrating. Maybe we’ll even have a snow party …

A Snow Party Wish List:

Snow Day

We only got an inch or two, but Jason and Jenna were thrilled. At least until they walked outside and felt the blustery wind and 20-degree temperatures. In less than 2 minutes, their winter x games were over and they eagerly trudged back inside. I brought along a bucket of snow so they could play inside, but apparently their moments in the snow made them hungry, because they devoured it. I remember tasting snow as a child, but I don’t remember eating it by the bowlful – or asking for seconds.


Indoor Snowball Fight

J+J want snow. Bad. Last winter it snowed where we live four times (at least), so I don’t think they appreciate just how rare snow is in Texas. Tonight I was putting away the last of the Christmas stuff and came across a bag of tissue paper snowballs that grandma had made while she was visiting. We didn’t get a chance to play snowball fight while she was here, but I gave Jason and Jenna the bag of tissue paper balls last night and I couldn’t believe the excitement that ensued.

First, we ran around throwing the balls of paper at each other. As you can probably tell by his facial expression, Jason packs a serious punch into his snowballs.

After awhile, we moved upstairs and played ‘snow piles,’ taking turns piling the tissue balls on top of each other and then jumping out from under them. This was hysterical to them.

And, finally, they decided they wanted to sleep in the snow.


But as much as they loved tissue paper snow, I still hope they see the real thing soon.

Daily Art: Snowflakes

J+J are very eager for snow this year, and the recent viewings of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and other holiday videos haven’t helped matters. While I can’t make it snow, I can make paper snowflakes. I had bookmarked this tutorial for more elaborate patterns, but I decided to wing it and make a few simple ones out of coffee filters for J+J to paint and glitter this morning.

Daily Art: Snowy Shaving Cream Trees

My mom suggested we try this craft – at our house, not hers. I think she must have known how messy it would be. But J+J loved it, so I have a feeling we’ll be making more shaving cream snow before winter’s end.

The snow mixture can be made with 2 parts shaving cream and 1 part glue, but we made ours a little light on the glue since I knew we would be getting our hands in it. For more three-dimensionality to the snow, you can stick to the 2-to-1 ratio.