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Secret Santa Holiday Cookies & Free Holiday Printables

Well, over here we are baking our little hearts out 
because it seems to be the perfect way to get in the spirit of the Christmas season! 
Last week I shared our Betty Crocker recipe for 
and they were so delicious that this week we are at it again! 

This time we decided to bake cookies (with a secret mission as the end goal), 
and since you can never have too many cookies,
we printed out some cookie coupons,
headed over to Winco,
 and picked out two different kinds of Betty Crocker cookie mixes,
along with frosting spread and colored decorating frosting.
Svea decided that we were going to make chocolate chip cookies
and sugar cookies so we headed home with our delicious mixes to get baking!
Pappa and Uncle JJ joined in the baking fun this time
and we started out with the chocolate chip ones.
Baking has become such treasured family time!
Svea gets so excited to watch and help with each part
and I know that these moments are ones that I will look back on for the rest of my life.
After a little taste test to make sure that the cookies weren't poison
(that's what my mom always says when she samples what she's cooking) 
Svea decided that she approved and that they were the perfect consistency!
JJ scooped all of the cookies onto the baking sheets for us
and we barely got them into the oven before Little Muppet
was excitedly grabbing the bag of sugar cookie mix to start on those!
I love making sugar cookies because the shape and color options
are limitless!
After rolling out the dough for the sugar cookies,
I decided to go with heart and house shapes.
I thought they would be fitting since Christmas is about
the love of Christ and being home with loved ones!
While the cookies were in the oven I headed over here
for some free printables for our Secret Santa mission to #SpreadCheer!
The idea is to leave cookies on someone's doorstep to help spread cheer
and then nominate others to do the same!
A movement to bring joy (and cookies) to others is always something
that I want to be a part of. :)
 Once the sugar cookies were baked and frosted
we put them into brown paper bags,
tied them with red twine,
and added jingle bells along with the free printable tags from Betty Crocker!
The final part to our Secret Santa mission
was to deliver the cookies to the houses!

I was really looking forward to delivering cookies to one house in particular.
Last year was Svea's first Christmas
and there is a home in our neighborhood that is completely decked out with
one of those dancing light shows that go with the holidays music.
One night we stopped there and I watched Lance twirl around in the glow of the lights
with Svea laughing in his arms.
I thought my heart would burst from pure joy.
I was so grateful that I was able to make that memory because they
were willing to go through the trouble of putting all of those lights up,
so I've been waiting for just the right moment to quietly thank them.
At their house, Svea and I had to be extra sneaky, 
but she was very excited about our mission to #SpreadCheer!
She wanted to carry the bag all by herself and 
she kept whispering to herself, mimicking the quiet jingle bell sound. 
After we left the cookies at the door, we heard the family coming out of their garage!
I told Svea we had to run
and we snuck across the front yard again escaping without being seen
(but they did go back in to answer the doorbell).
 With one last glance behind we hopped into our car and headed for home.
Svea was grinning from ear to ear
and I thought about how special it was that last year we made such a
beautiful Christmas memory at that house
and this year we made a new special memory there.
It will surely be a family tradition in years to come.
Try starting a new family tradition this year
to spread cheer to those you love
or even those you don't know
by making cookies of your own and delivering them in secret!
To pass on the fun I am nominating
my blogger friends Emma, Ali, and Jen to #SpreadCheer!

You can also download these awesome free cookie coloring pages here
for your little ones to practice cookie designs before you decorate
or just to color for fun!

Make sure you print out this coupon before you head to the grocery store for your holiday cookie supplies:

Coupon Offer: Save $0.50 when you buy ONE (1) Betty Crocker™ Cookie Mix

Also, be sure to enter this giveaway by Betty Crocker to win $20 Paypal cash
to use for whatever other holiday fun you want to dream up this year!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Cranberry Chocolate Chew Holiday Cupcakes

So... surprise!
My kid loves chocolate just as much as I do.
(Which is a lot!)
I am always trying to think of fun treats
(chocolate ones that can subdue the sweet tooth are always good)
to bake with my Little Muppet since she is very good at eating her fruits and veggies
and sometimes that calls for a delicious reward-
also since baking is my forte in the kitchen
and the only area in which I feel I sometimes have mad skills.
All other areas are questionable.

To whip up a little dessert for us
I sought out the ingredients that we needed at Winco
and, after a long stay there of grabbing groceries as well,
Svea got to pick out a little handful of jellybeans from their dispensers.
I LOVE that system!
Winco has dispensers with pasta, beans, candy, etc.
and you just grab whatever amount you need!
Ok I'm geeking out about my favorite grocery store.
Back to baking.

I headed home with Rice Chex Cereal
and Betty Crocker Super Moist Chocolate Cake
along with sidekicks of eggs, frosting, and berries.

I got to work baking my Cranberry Chocolate Chew Holiday Cupcakes
and Svea got to work helping lick the spatula
and eating frosting.
I made cupcakes since they are the perfect size for Svea to hold by herself
and added pieces of Rice Chex Mix inside to give them a lightly chewy texture!
The chocolate batter fills the Chex pieces and bakes into them
leaving chewy pieces throughout!
SO yummy.

Here's the recipe if you'd like to #SpreadCheer and make them for your loved ones this holiday season:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and gather Betty Crocker cake mix, Rice Chex cereal, eggs, vegetable oil, cranberries, and frosting. 
  2. Mix Betty Crocker Super Moist Chocolate Cake mix with three eggs, 1/2 cup of vegetable oil, 1 1/4 cups water, and a dollop of sour cream (for an even more creamy taste) by hand or in a mixer for 2 minutes on medium speed. 
  3. Spray cupcake pan with cooking spray. 
  4. Fill each slot halfway with batter, add a few pieces of Rice Chex, and then fill with more batter so that each slot is about 3/4 full and Chex pieces are covered. 
  5. Bake for about 15 minutes. 
  6. Frost each cupcake with Betty Crocker chocolate frosting and garnish with a cranberry. Some of my family members like to eat the cupcakes with the cranberries and some like them without so it's up to you if they are for taste or for show. :)
  7. Enjoy!
And here are some helpful tips from Svea on how to eat your cupcakes:

Begin by pointing to your cupcake and saying, "Ooooo! Woooow!" 
 Try giving your cupcake a kiss so it knows that it's loved.
 Taste a little lick of frosting with your finger.
 Realize how amazing it tastes!
 Go all in!

Download these awesome coupons before your next Winco trip 
for savings on your holiday treat baking needs!
You can grab a coupon to:

Save $1 on Bulk Foods when you buy four Betty Crocker SuperMoist Cake Mix or Ready to Spread Frosting (any flavors / varieties)
Save $1 on Bulk Foods when you buy any two boxes of Chex cereal (any flavors / varieties)

And in order to spread some #WincoCheer, 
enter the giveaway below by simply visiting the link 
to win $10 in Paypal cash for some holiday spending fun!

Thanks for stopping by!
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