‘Tis the Season

Posted on Friday, November 6th, 2009 at 12:29 pm by Engine Communications

Example invitation designed on MyPunchbowl.

Example invitation designed on MyPunchbowl.

With Hallowe’en behind us, it’s now time to focus our energy on the next big event.Yes, you’ve got it, Christmas!

It’s hard to believe that our local Santa Clause parade is right around the corner. That signifies to me that it is officially time to start thinking about decorating, buying that special gift for everyone on your list (I’m definitely not one of those early shoppers), and yes, one of my most favorite things, party planning and holiday entertaining. 

One of the most important tips I can give for planning a holiday party, is to plan ahead. Party schedules during the month of December are usually pretty hectic, making it crucial to get that invite out early enough, especially if you want your party to be a success. I have to admit, I’m a big fan of getting a hard copy invite sent in the mail, but if you’re in a pinch, online invites are the way to go. 

My fan list starting with my favorite:

  1. MyPunchbowl  
  2. Paperless Post
  3. Evite

More creative control is a total bonus with MyPunchbowl. You can pick from multiple fonts, change colors and shadings, add images, and play with placement of the text. You also have the option to add the event to your online calendar, iCal, Outlook, Google or Yahoo calendars. Neat!

If social media is your thing then you can post your event on Facebook, Twitter or your blog. Doesn’t get much easier than this does it?

If you’re in a panic to get that invite out ASAP, then Evite is quick and easy to use. Paperless Post has an elegant, more formal style of invites to choose from, also fairly easy to create and send, slightly confusing when checking out the details. 

Next step ~ menu planning, including cocktails and beverages – stay tuned for next Friday’s post. 

On another note, Bryna has been talking about collaboration, and over the next few weeks we will be teaming up with foodies from all over (even as far as Auckland, New Zealand), to plan a festive holiday feast.

The lovely, talented, Holly Fillmore.

The lovely, talented, Holly Fillmore.

Today I thought that I would share a recipe from Holly (Fillmore’s wife and baker/blogger extraordinaire). These cookies, accompanied by a thermos filled with hot coco and a warm blanket, will make you sing to the tune of Jingle Bells while eagerly anticipating Santa’s arrival at the parade! 

Holly writes: 

One way we celebrate Christmas in our home is by baking cookies and other delicious goodies. Many of these tasty treats are only made and enjoyed at this special time of year (it seems more of a treat that way). I usually try to make each family member’s favorite treat, and then a few more on top of that. I start baking early and store what I can in the freezer (I try to keep it a secret until December or else it all disappears). 

The Sparkling Ginger Cookie is a real crowd pleaser. I can’t count how many times I have had others rave about this actually very simple and super easy cookie! 

Ginger Sparklers (photoography by Holly)
Ginger Sparklers (photoography by Holly)

Ginger Sparklers 

  • 3/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • White sugar, for rolling 

In a large sized bowl, cream margarine and first amount of sugar well. Beat in egg. Mix in molasses. In another bowl mix together dry ingredients; flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon and salt. Add to creamed mixture. Mix well. Shape into 1inch balls and roll in sugar. Bake at 350 for approx 8 minutes. *For a chewy cookie, remove from oven a little early, the longer they cook the crispier they will be. 

Cheers & Happy Holiday Planning!


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