Girl Scout Samoa Nanaimo Bars

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Hihihihihihihi. Have you ever had one of those days where you feel like nothing goes right? And then you realize that literally everything you’re sad about is just a bunch of first-world problems, and nothing is actually wrong and you’re … Continue reading

DIY Reversible Coffee Sleeve

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In case you’re wondering if it’s a good idea to drink coffee anytime after 4 p.m., the answer is no.  It’s not a good idea. Even if you have a test the next day and plan on spending the whole night studying … Continue reading

Wheat Print Dress, French Fries, and Home Libraries

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Happy happy Friday!

It’s almost 3 and I’m sure half of you can’t wait to get out of work and half of you just finished your last class of the day and are on your way to your unpaid internship.

Either way, I hope that you’re having a wonderful Friday afternoon.  Luckily, I was able to get all of my classes Monday-Thursday this semester and I don’t work Friday so I’ve just been having the most relaxing day.  Yay for Fridays off!  When you work and go to school six days a week, having Fridays off is absolutely the most wonderful thing in the world.

I actually spent the day in bed, eating French fries, watching Sex in the City, and reading random books.  Tonight I’m driving to Tahoe to have dinner with my friend.  *angels randomly begin singing*

I really think that it’s important to relax every once in a while doing exactly what you want to do.  I really love watching TV and eating and relaxing every once in a while.  If you really love going out and dancing, do that.  If you really love spending some free time sewing or bowling or hiking, you do you.  Of course, I love sewing and hiking and playing piano and singing and writing songs and baking, etc. etc.  But sometimes I just want to lay in bed and watch reruns of The Office.  So I did that.  Take a mental health break every once in a while and lay in bed for a day.  Your brain will love you.

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I also taught myself how to use my tripod, which my brother showed me how to use like, 8 times, but I either wasn’t listening or can’t figure out how to do things correctly.  Either way, it happened and now we have pictures.

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*Ignore my messy floor please & thank u*

This is one of my favorite dresses ever.  You can expect to see it in the future.  I have about ten black dresses (it’s getting to be a problem).  After buying a black dress at American Apparel over the summer, I saw this one about two weeks later.  I almost didn’t buy it.  But I had to.

And I wear both dresses all the time.

So it was totally worth it.

This outfit is actually a combination of some of my favorite articles of clothing.  1. The dress  2. The shoes  3. Tights in general, and 4. the cardigan.  I’ll actually wear this outfit in the early fall or late spring with another sweater that’s more flowy and less warm.  But since it’s been chilly around Reno, I decided that this cardigan would be my best option.

Cardigans can substitute for winter jackets in 40 degree weather, right?

Probably.

I will wear this outfit whenever I don’t know what else to wear.  I have about five or six “go-to” outfits, and this is definitely one of them.  I have a cute black pair of heeled ankle boots that look really cute with the dress if I need to dress up a little more.  Simple dress + heeled ankle boots + jacket/cardigan + smoky eye = really great outfit.

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One of my favorite parts is the simplicity of the print.  It looks like wheat to me.  I don’t know if it really is, but I’ve decided they’re little wheat stalks.

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Dress: Forever 21 Cardigan: Inc. Tights: Old Shoes: Tilly’s Necklace: DIY

Do you have favorite books that you reread all the time?  (Mine is Harry Potter!)

SerendipitybySaraSig

*Song of the Day: Someday–The Strokes

Chiles Rellenos Casserole

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Hellohellohello.

Like me, I’m sure many of you lovely readers have just recently started classes again.

If you have not started classes, go away we don’t want you here (I’m just jealous please don’t go away).

If you are done with classes (because you’re brilliant and already graduated and are probably head of your company right now) congrats, and also go away, we don’t want you here.  (I’m just tired of waking up early already and being in accounting/economic classes.  Again, I’m just jealous please don’t go away).

Luckily, I’m starting to take classes that I’m actually interested in, and if all goes well then I should be going to London to study for a month this summer!  (!!!!!!!) So hopefully that all works out.

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However, if you’re strange like me, you’re probably kind of okay with being in classes right now.  Although I loved laying in bed watching Netflix and eating tangerines for 8 hours a day over winter break, I also get tired of not having a schedule.

The “wake up, go to school, go to work, come home, do homework, work out, make dinner, clean up, shower, and go to bed” schedule.

Rinse and repeat until spring break.

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This recipe was actually developed last week over winter break.  When I thought I had food poisoning.  Turns out it’s something weird with my kidneys (wtf right?)

Anyways, one particular night where I swear I could actually feel the cramping of my kidneys, I was desperately craving chiles rellenos.  However, I was not about to go to the store at 10 p.m. to get ingredients so that I could spend 2 or 3 hours making them.  Also the Mexican restaurant near my house was closed so the only logical solution was to see what was in my pantry.

And yay, there was a can of green chiles!  And cheese and eggs in my fridge.  It was all looking up.

So I just whipped this up and ended up very happy.

This casserole actually came out more like a chiles rellenos breakfast casserole.  Although I would like to try another recipe, where I use whole chiles (and maybe some mole sauce or something?), this was pretty damn good.

Here ya go.

Ingredients:

1 or 2 small can green chiles, drained

2 eggs

3/4 c. milk

2 Tbs. flour

1-1 1/2 c. jack cheese, grated

Garlic powder, to taste

Onion powder, to taste

Salt and pepper, to taste.

Preheat oven to 400* F.  Spray a ramekin or small casserole pan with cooking spray, or olive oil.

Spread out the can of green chiles in the casserole pan.  Use however many you want to use.  I only used one because that’s all I had, but it would be really good with two.  Sprinkle half the cheese over the chiles.

In a bowl, mix together the eggs, milk, flour, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper.  I just sprinkled the spices in according to my taste.  You don’t need very much.  If you eat gluten free, you could probably just leave out the flour.  Or sub with gluten free flour.

Pour the egg mixture over the chiles.  Sprinkle on remaining cheese.

Bake for 30-45 minutes, depending on how fast your oven cooks.  Cover with foil if the cheese gets too browned.

Serve with salsa and tortillas!  Or by itself if it’s 11 p.m.  You know, float your boat.

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Uhh do you see the cheese too?

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Go forth and indulge.  You just started classes again.  Economics is boring.  You deserve it.

XO Sara

*Song of the Day: Still Together–Mac DeMarco

Soft Sugar Cookies with Sour Cream Frosting

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I know that you’re probably over cookies right now after the holidays.  You’re probably really over all of my cookie recipes.

And if you’re still doing well with your New Year’s resolution to work out and eat healthy (don’t call it a diet!  Diets are bad!!!) then you’re probably mad at me for posting pictures of delicious looking cookies.

I get it.  I’m over cookies/shouldn’t be looking at pictures of cookies too.

But I made these for a cookies for a jewelry party I hosted a couple weeks ago, and had to post them.

They’re actually a copycat Swig recipe from Vintage Revivals.  I’ve never actually been to Swig, which I’m sad about because they’re located in St. George which I used to pass by at least once a month when my family and I would go to our cabin.  But if I ever end up in St. George again, you can bet I’ll be there.  Mandi from Vintage Revivals claims that these are not only the best sugar cookies ever, but the best cookies (in general) ever.

And while I wouldn’t say they’re the best cookies I’ve ever had (I’m more of a chocolate chip girl, myself) I would agree that they’re pretty damn good.  And my friends were obsessed.

Sooooo….def worth it I would say.  I would make them anyways.  (And I did).

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Anyways, sorry I haven’t posted in a week (or two or something).  I’ve had food poisoning for the past few days, which makes me both repulsively nauseous and ravenously hungry.

It’s a good life, you guys.

Anyways, today I actually made myself get out of bed (I’ve been on a Friends Netflix marathon for 3 days since I’ve been sick) and organize my closet, run some errands, and clean my house.  I figure either way I’ll feel awful so I might as well be productive!

On another note, I’ll probably go to the doctor tomorrow.

Now that I’ve told you all about my gross sickness, here’s a delicious recipe!

Jeez, I’m the best.

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*Recipe slightly adapted from Vintage Revivals*

Cookie Ingredients:

1 c. butter, softened

3/4 c. vegetable oil

1 1/4 c. sugar + 1/4 c. extra for top

3/4 c. powdered sugar

2 Tbs. water

2 eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. cream of tartar

1 tsp. salt

5 1/2 c. flour

Frosting Ingredients:

1/2 c. butter, softened

3/4 c. sour cream

1 1/2-2 c. powdered sugar

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 c. milk

1 tsp. vanilla

Sprinkles (optional–I actually only used them for pictures)

Preheat oven to 350* F.

Cream together the butter, vegetable oil, sugars, water, eggs, and vanilla.  Combine dry ingredients and add to wet ingredients in increments.  Mix until well incorporated, but not overmixed.  Roll into larger balls–about 2 inches.

Spread remaining sugar onto a plate.  Using the bottom of a glass (I found the wine glass was best), press the bottom into the sugar, and use the bottom of the glass to flatten each cookie.  If the sugar won’t stick at first, slightly dampen the bottom of your glass by rubbing water on with your finger.

Bake for about 8-10 minutes, or until the bottoms are slightly brown.

Cool.

Meanwhile, for the frosting, cream the butter and sour cream until smooth.  Add powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla until it is a thick frosting.  Thin to desired consistency with milk.

Spread frosting on cooled cookies.  Add sprinkles, if desired.  Keep in fridge until ready to serve.

Enjoy!

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They’re pretty soft and kind of crumbly, in a good way.  The frosting is like a tangier cream cheese, but a little lighter.  Suuuuuper good.  My friends each ate like, 5.

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According to Vintage Revival’s instructions, the cookies should be cold while the frosting is room temp in order to get the real Swig experience.  I wouldn’t know, but I’m sure they’re delicious.  Since I didn’t have time to frost cold cookies as my guests were coming in, I left them in the fridge and let them come slightly to room temp.  They were still pretty delicious.  I also added vanilla because I think every baked good should have vanilla in them.  To each their own!

Have you guys ever been to Swig?  Let me know in the comments.

XO Sara

Sweaters and Insecurities

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Hello friends.

Today (tonight) (at midnight) I will be talking to you about bodies!

Mostly your body (or my body in my case) and insecurities and confidence.

But first, about these pictures……

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I decided that I wanted some updated piano pictures of me.  The only ones I have are old, and since playing piano (and music in general) is a huge passion of mine, I wanted some for general uses.

As for my outfit: I decided to stage the pictures to look how I would in every day life.  Generally, if I’m at home, I’m wearing comfortable clothing.  I especially love sweaters, socks, leggings, flannels, etc.  Hence the sweater and socks.  I also decided to keep my piano how it looks like if you walk into my house.  I decorated it a little differently than I normally do, but this is what my life looks like on an average day.

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(I also tried pictures with nothing on my piano, which turned out pretty boring.)

Now on to bodies!  While taking these pictures, I was kind of nervous.  1. My hair was a mess and kind of wavy from having it in a ponytail all night.  2. My makeup was not as perfect as I would normally like for pictures, and 3. I wasn’t sure if the outfit would end up looking like I was trying too hard to be “sexy” (you know, in that way you see girls looking on the Urban Outfitters website like they’re so nonchalantly sitting in a meadow or something wearing a t-shirt and their underwear).  I was worried that having thigh high socks on with really short shorts would seem slutty, or if I would be judged by others based on my looks.  I’m not a model, after all.

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In addition to be worried about my hair/makeup/outfit, I was worried about my body.  Under no circumstances have I ever felt that I am overweight, or thought that I had anything truly wrong with my body.

But like most people, I have wanted to change some things about my body.  I have wanted my legs to be longer and my midsection to be curvier.  My body in general to be curvier.  I have wanted to be taller, bigger boobs, prettier skin, skinnier thighs.  Even though I am small, I have still had insecurities.

Every time I have expressed these, I always get things like, “But you’re so skinny!” “You’re so little!” “You’re like, what, 100 pounds?”

And while all of those things are true (because I am naturally that way), I still have had insecurities about my body.  There seems to be this misunderstanding that being small/skinny/little means we do not have insecurities.  But being small/skinny/little oftentimes means having no boobs/butt/curves.  It oftentimes means that we have bodies similar to that of 13 year old girls.

And listening to somebody complain about their flaws they have for themselves while undermining the flaws I have for myself is a little bit annoying.

And while taking these pictures, all I could think was, “Will these look okay?”  Because I knew that I would not look like those models on the internet, whose legs go on forever.  Who have meticulously applied eyeliner and mascara to look like they aren’t wearing any at all.  Whose hair is perfectly tousled because they “woke up like this”.

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But when I actually took a look at the pictures, I didn’t care at all.

Because I loved how I looked in the photos.  I loved my wavy hair.  I loved that my body looked like mine.  I loved how my legs didn’t go on forever, and my sweater was baggy, and my makeup wasn’t perfect.  Because I’m not a model.

I love how if any of you were to see me in real person, you would still recognize me from these pictures.

For the last year or so, I have become so incredibly confident about my body.  I find myself judging my “flaws” less and less.  Because they are not flaws.  They’re made up problems that I have in my own head.  They’re not real.  They’re only real to me because I let them be that way.

I’m not sure where it came from exactly, but I have some ideas.  For starters, at the beginning of last year, I broke off a couple bad relationships (one in particular that made me feel especially bad about myself).  I formed some new great ones.  I had people in my life who made me feel beautiful and empowered.  They reminded me that I was beautiful and liked me for things I didn’t even like about myself.  They encouraged me.  Out with the negative, in with the positive.  Some of those people aren’t really in my life anymore, even just a year later, but they still had a huge impact on my confidence, and I am so grateful to them for that.

I also just decided that I was fed up with the discouragement I was giving myself.  I was tired of the bullshit that I kept telling myself over and over.  I decided to learn to love myself for who I am.

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So while I’m sure it’s nice to be tall with perfect curves and long legs, I don’t care because I am who I am.  I love being the cute small girl with bangs and oxfords.  I like that I am different.

And I like that these photos came out kind of sexy.

Not lingerie-in-your-face-obvious kind of sexy, but subtly sexy.  Like how girls actually look when we’re hanging around our house (because unlike girls in movies/ads/perfume commercials, we don’t just hang out in lacy underwear all day with a perfect chignon and red lipstick).

Ever since I have started loving my body, I have been so much happier.  Every time I think about something I would like to change, I can so easily ignore the negative thoughts.  Of course, I still have my bad days.  But I always know that I’m still pretty in my own unique way.

I’m fit, I’m healthy, and I like who I am as a person.

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Sweater: Forever 21 Shorts: Old Socks: American Apparel

And I love these pictures, dammit.

The whole point of this is that we cannot change the way we were made.  It’s easier to learn to love your body than to obsess over how much it bothers you.

I ♥♥♥ my body.

I hope you love, or can learn to love yours too.

Because as cliche as this seems, everyone is beautiful.

XO Sara

Song of the Day: “Body”–Karen O (more about relationships than anything, but empowering nonetheless).

Floral Layers

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Good things so far about the new year:

1. I ate ice cream twice today.

2. I learned what ‘fleek’ means.

3. FRIENDS IS ON NETFLIX (goodbye social life. goodbye productivity)

4. I learned the lyrics to “Breezeblocks” by Alt-J.

Things that could use some improving:

1. My grammar is progressively getting worse post by post.  (I promise I know how to use commas and periods and spelling correctly.  I’m just lazy and like to pretend I’m blogging on twitter apparently).

2. I’m housesitting for a friend and while I was getting her mail today I dropped the mail key into the bushes in front of the mail box and the key disappeared into the snow and I still have yet to find it.  Do you know how not fun it is to dig around in the snow on your hands and knees for 15 minutes in the dark before accepting defeat.  DO YOU?!

Anyways, hopefully a good magnet taped to a wooden spoon will help in the morning.

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Anyways, yesterday night my brother and I went to my cousin’s house for dinner.  We arrived about 15 minutes early, so we decided to take some pictures outside before we went in.  (Mostly I just really liked my outfit).

The pictures are way too bright since it was a weird time of day, but I think they do the job.

This dress is one of my favorites, and a perfect example of how to make a summer dress into a winter outfit.  I always wear it with leggings (because it’s really short!) but add a sweater, boots, and a jacket and it becomes a winter outfit!

And it makes me very very happy!

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Dress: Forever 21 Leggings: Forever 21 Sweater: Old Jacket: Burton Shoes: Minnetonka Sunglasses: Ray Ban

Anyways, my brother left this morning so I’ve been a little sad today.  Living alone (or with two roommates in college) gets a little lonely so I always have a little time of mourning after somebody goes home.  But I practiced piano, watched The Help, and had a nice solo dinner so it wasn’t the worst day.  Plus, my brother will be back soon!  Another thing to add to my list of good this year!

What are some good things about your new year so far?

XO Sara

Song of the Day: Breezeblocks–Alt-J (obviously!)

Emerald Sweaters and Snowy Parks

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Hello friends, and welcome to 2015!

As I’m sure you’re aware, it is now 2 AM and I am slightly delirious from sleep deprivation/staying up too late on New Years.

Kinda the same thing???  Pretty much.  If something weird pops out of my brain and somehow ends up written on this page, please just know how tired I am.

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Anyways, now that it’s the New Year, I’ve decided that I will occasionally be posting some of my favorite outfits that I wear on my blog (new year new blog??).  I love clothes so so much, and have recently been getting more into fashion.  I do not claim that I know anything about fashion, but I truly believe that everybody should wear what they think makes them feel good.  Any outfit that I post is posted because I like how it makes me feel.

Simple as that.

I even began my shift in fashion blogging by cutting all my hair off!  About 8 inches (big guess-timate there).  It’s a huge hot mess in these pics, but I think it’s cute and sassy and fits my personality much better than my last ‘do!

Shifting back to the clothes, most of my stuff comes from Forever 21, H&M, Urban Outfitters, American Apparel, Top Shop, etc.  However, I love thrifting so a lot of my stuff is from local thrift stores.  I’ll try my hardest to note where my clothing is from.

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I spent my New Years with my little brother, who is visiting me from Las Vegas.  I drank champagne out of my coffee mug with a bike painted on the front, my brother drank a bottled Coke, we ate quesadillas, and watched The Office.  At midnight we clinked our glasses and let Michael Scott ring in the New Year.

It was very reminiscent of my brother and I.

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Sweater: H&M Skirt: Thrifted Shoes: Tilly’s Tights: Old Socks: Target Jacket: Old Necklace: DIY

My brother and I have been thrifting, going to very pretty snowy parks, and hanging out at fun coffee shops and restaurants.  It’s everything that I love to do, but now I get to bring my brother along to show him around Reno.  (Shoutout to him for taking my fashion pics!)  Tomorrow’s (later today’s) agenda is bowling at the local bowling alley (exciting for my brother because all Vegas bowling alleys are in casinos), picture taking, lunch at a local cafe, and dinner with our aunt and cousins.

So far 2015 has been pretty good.

Thanks for reading my crazy 2 AM post on New Years Day.

Let this be a good year my friends.

XO Sara

Song of the Day: Is This It–The Strokes

The Best Nut Caramel E-V-E-R

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THIS IS MY 100TH POST EVER AND IT’S ON CHRISTMAS EVE!

And my 100th post is one of the best recipes ever!

We make this every Christmas.  Actually my mom made it.  I’ve been eating it.

Whatever.

These caramels are super good, have three types of nuts in them, and need to be cut super small, because otherwise you will just have a huge wad of caramel in your mouth.

Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it’s a little hard to chew.

I promise, they only take a few minutes to put together and they’re always everyone’s favorite.  Recipes that are super easy and that everyone loves=something you should make rn.

rn rn rn

*Recipe slightly adapted from Taste of Home*

Ingredients:

1 c. walnut halves

1 c. pecan halves

1 c. hazelnuts

1 tsp. butter

1 1/2 c. sugar

1 c. heavy whipping cream

1/2 c. light corn syrup

Place walnuts, pecans, and hazelnuts in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake at 350*F until you smell the nuts, and they are toasty brown.  Cool.  Line an 8 in. square pan with foil, and grease with butter.  Set aside.

In a heavy saucepan, combine sugar, cream, and corn syrup.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly.  Stir in toasted nuts.  Cook, without stirring until candy thermometer reads 238* (soft-ball stage).  Remove from heat.  Stir with a wooden spoon until creamy and thickened.  Quickly spread into prepared pan; cool.  Cover, refrigerate for 8 hours or more.  Lift candy out using the foil.  Discard foil.  Cut into little squares.  Place in mini cupcake liners to keep from sticking.  Keep in an airtight container.

Makes about 2 lbs.

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So cute.  So caramely.

So nutty.

Probably like your family that you get to deal with this Christmas.

Good luck and Merry Christmas to you and your (nutty) families.

Thanks for reading my 100th post ♥

XO Sara

(2nd) Song of the Day: Little Drummer Boy–Josh Groban

Cranberry White Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

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Merry Christmas Eve my lovely readers!

I hope your Christmas Eve (and Christmas) are beautiful and I hope you get to drink lots of wine.

Or eggnog if that’s your thing.

(But you should probably go with the wine).

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These cookies are super, super good.

They have tons of cranberries and white chocolate in them, and I promise you, they do not taste like raisins.

Raisins=no but craisins=yes.

Especially with white chocolate in oatmeal cookies.

They are amazing and I love them.

I actually remember when I was really little, and my mom and one of her best friends (whose recipe this is) would make the oatmeal cookies around Christmas time.  And I would watch.  And color my coloring books.  And help when they would let me.  These cookies were always one of my favorites, but my dad’s favorite is chocolate chip, and he would normally win the cookie battle when my mom asked, “What kind of cookies should I make?”.  Anyway, this year I decided to make them and add the white chocolate and cranberries.  You know, because why not?  It’s Christmas and stuff.

I’ll be taking a blogging break tomorrow, but I want to leave you with a few more recipes in case you want to make some last minute cookies tomorrow, or even After Christmas cookies!

(After Christmas cookies are definitely a thing).

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Ingredients:

1 1/4 c. flour

1 tsp. baking soda

1 c. butter, softened

1/4 c. sugar

3/4 c. brown sugar–packed

1 small package instant vanilla pudding

2 eggs

3 1/2 c. oats

1 c. white chocolate chips

1/2 c. dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 375* F.  In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the flour and baking soda.  Cream butter, sugars, and pudding together in a separate bowl.  Beat until smooth and creamy.  Beat in eggs, one at a time.  Gradually add flour mixture.  Stir in oats, white chocolate chips, and cranberries.  Scoop in to 1 inch balls and bake for 10-12 minutes.  They will seem very soft, so let them cool slightly on the baking sheet before removing.  Enjoy!

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I just love how pretty and festive they are, plus they’re sooo good.

Let me know if you guys have any good family recipes, or any funny Christmas stories.

Have a beautiful, wonderful, amazing Christmas.

XO Sara

Song of the Day: I’ll Be Home for Christmas–She & Him