My Holiday To-Make List + November Foodie Penpals

One of my favorite things about the impending holiday is the copious amount of baking that I get to partake in.

Last year, I spent an entire day in December baking with my mom. We set up both of our stand mixers and went to town until her beautiful kitchen looked like this:

To me, it's simply not Christmas without cookies. For as long as I can remember, I've baked holiday cookies with my mom before Christmas and this year will be no exception. Next weekend, the baking shall commence! Of course, we have a list of our 'regulars' that must grace our Christmas party every year, but I also have a few things that I want to add to the mix this year, if not on our baking day, but at some point during the season.

Our 'Regulars':

Thumbprints (filled with raspberry jam)

Chocolate Cherry Kisses

Chocolate Crinkles/Snowflakes

Butter Cookie Cutouts

Eggnog Snickerdoodles

Seven Layer Italian Rainbow Cookies (a first for us last year, but one that is now in the permanent collection!)

We also add a few new ones in the mix to try. Last year it was Mama Pea's peanut butter dough balls, malted sandwich cookies, and red velvet sandwich cookies with white chocolate buttercream!

our cookie tray from Christmas '10

On My 'To Add' List (so far):

Marshmallows (perhaps of the peppermint persuasion)

Salted Caramels (I have a recipe I've been eyeing!)

Gingerbread Cupcakes

Something with eggnog

I'm sure I'll have more as I start scouring magazines, cookbooks and Pinterest! I can't wait to start on some baking this weekend! With so many holiday parties and gatherings coming up this month, I have no doubt that the goodies will be put to good use :)

On another fun note, today is the November Foodie Pen Pal Reveal Day! This is my first time participating and it was incredibly fun! Thanks so much to Lindsay @ The Lean Green Bean for putting this together...what a fantastic idea. For my first pen pal, I received a box of goodies from Emily @ As Dreams Become Reality. I am so happy to have found Emily and her blog because she is simply adorable and we clearly have similar tastes, based on her care package :) I opened the box to find her sweet note...

So incredibly thoughtful to not only send me lots of pumpkin & peanut butter goodies but to also include Shaun! Very sweet :) Let's take a peek at the goods, shall we?

In the mix: Trader Joe's pumpkin butter, pumpkin spice granola & tempting trail mix, Clif MoJo bars in mountain mix & pb pretzel, some Tazo tea bags in calm and cinnamon spice and some pb packets, including Justin's & PB & Co.

Wow! Isn't that a great mix of goods? You know I dug right into all of it, especially that pumpkin butter! How perfect for the season. I also thoroughly enjoyed the Clif bars post workout this past weekend :) Thanks so much to Emily for such a great box of goodies!!

If you want to learn more about Foodie Penpals, or to join up, check out Lindsay's blog today for info, and also for a whole lotta links to other Penpal write ups!

So there you have it! Lots of fun and yummy things happening this week in the Humiston house :)

Questions of the Day:

What's on your baking list this season? Anything I should be including on my list?

Have you ever had a pen pal? I had a French pen pal in middle school via my French class. It was so cool to get letters from a girl my age in another country!