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December 2001 Issue
Getting Festive for the Holidays
by Patty Waage
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For a tasty decoration, I like to make fun little trains or airplanes out of Lifesaver candy rolls and a pack of gum. You can also glue the red striped peppermint candies on for wheels or even use an open pack of Lifesavers. That way, the little ones can suck on a candy while making their very own ornament.

 

Candy Train

  • 1 5-pack gum
  • 1 roll Lifesavers
  • 1 Rollo
  • 1 caramel
  • 1 Hershey's Kiss
  • 4 Starbright or white peppermints
Glue the pack of Lifesavers onto the flat side of the pack of gum. Then glue the Rollo onto the front of the pack of Lifesavers. Glue the Hershey's Kiss near the front on the top of the pack of Lifesavers and the caramel near the back on the top of the pack of Lifesavers. On both sides of the train, glue two peppermint wheels.
  • Yields: 1 candy train ornament
  • Preparation Time: 10 minutes
 

Chocolate-covered sugar cones make tasty and fun treats for the holidays. You can use them to top a dollop of ice cream or place them on a cake to make a holiday forest. The older kids can help decorate them. I wouldn't let the toddlers help because the chocolate coating can burn little fingers. They can pick out the decorations for them though. You could give the kids a festive snack while you dip the cones. Santa's favorite is a candle made from a banana, set into a pineapple ring, and topped with a cherry. You could also pass out bags of reindeer food to helpful little elves. For those helper elves that have been naughty, you could give bags of snowman poop or reindeer poop! I've found that my nephew really goes for this. (Isn't it amazing what kids think of?) Little angels can get packets of angel dust or colored crystal sugar to put on their favorite cookies.

 

Sugar Cone Christmas Trees

  • Sugar cones
  • Chocolate chips, white chocolate chips or candy melts
  • Assorted candies for decorating - see suggestions below
  • Waxed Paper
Get all of the ingredients out. Spread out sheets of waxed paper to work on. Microwave the chocolate or candy melts in a shallow bowl just until they start to melt, stir until smooth. Roll each cone in the chocolate with two fingers inside cone (if possible) to hold. Lift the cone out with two fingers inside cone. Place a gumdrop on top and press gently. The gumdrop should make it easier to stand the cone up on waxed paper.

Decorate the cone with assorted candies. Allow the decorated "trees" to stand until the chocolate hardens. Store sealed in a cool place.

Note: White chocolate seems to harden much faster than regular chocolate, so decorate the white "trees" right away and let the regular chocolate ones set up a minute before decorating.

Suggested decorations:

  • M&M's large and mini sizes,
  • Gumdrops,
  • Marshmallows,
  • Cinnamon decors,
  • Silver ball decors,
  • Sprinkles,
  • Colored sugars,
  • Decorator Icing (see below).
To make Decorator Icing: Mix confectioners' sugar with just enough milk (just the tiniest bit) and food coloring to make a thick icing. It should be thick, but still able to pipe through a decorator's tip. If it's too thick, add more milk (a little at a time). If it's too thin, add more confectioners' sugar. Pipe either with a decorator's bag and tips or put it in the corner of a freezer bag and twist shut; snip off tiniest bit of corner and squeeze bag gently to pipe frosting out. Make sure freezer bag has nice square corners and not pleated ones.
  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes plus drying time
 

 

Santa's Favorite: Christmas candle

  • 1 leaf of lettuce
  • 1 pineapple slice
  • 1/2 banana
  • 2 maraschino cherries
  • 1 candy mint leaf
Place the lettuce on a plate, put the pineapple slice on the lettuce and put the cut end of the banana in hole of pineapple. Top the banana with a cherry. Place the mint leaf on the side with the other cherry.
  • Yields: 1 "candle"
  • Preparation Time: 5 minutes
 

 

Snowman Poop

    Put tiny marshmallows or white packing "peanuts" into a plastic bag, accompanied by this poem:
    Santa checked his list not once, but twice.
    He found you've been naughty not nice.
    Since coal is so expensive, Here's the scoop:
    He's filled your stocking with Snowman poop!
  • Yields: 1 bag
  • Preparation Time: 5 minutes
 

 

Reindeer Poop

    This one's basically the same as above, but use chocolate covered raisins, plain raisins, malted milk balls, etc. Include the same poem as above, but change the word "Snowman" to "Reindeer".
  • Yields: 1 bag
  • Preparation Time: 5 minutes
 

 

Magic Reindeer Food

    Use a mixture of any of the following:
    • oatmeal
    • birdseed
    • rice crispies
    • a little bit of colored crystal sugar
    Place the mixture in plastic bags and give with these instructions:
    Make a wish and close your eyes tight,
    Then sprinkle on your lawn at night.
    As Santa's reindeer fly & roam
    This food will guide them to your home.
    For your gift to the reindeer and Rudolph too
    Your wish may be real, your dreams may come true.
  • Yields: 1 bag
  • Preparation Time: 5 minutes
 

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