Sunday, December 15, 2019

Sunday Food and Pets Post - Pretzel Bar!

Charlie in the Woods

Hello Friends and Happy Sunday! 

There are TEN days until Christmas! Are you excited? I can't help it, I definitely am! Growing up, holidays were always sources of anxiety and fear for me, so I guess that's why I pull out all of the stops to enjoy each holiday and special event now! The first special event of our Christmas season is Tree Trimming Day. That falls on December 10th each year and I planned a Pretzel Bar!


While trimming the tree, we sipped on egg nog and snacked on cookies. I made some homemade Egg Nog for Alex, he added some pear liqueur to his. My stomach can't handle egg yolks, so my egg nog was store bought. Funny enough, the store bought lists "frozen egg yolks" in the ingredients, but I guess it's been processed enough that my stomach can handle it...I  spiked mine with rum and brandy!


We always munch on cookies when we're trimming the tree. This year I made a few new recipes, these are Fruitcake Cookies - I'm not a fan of raisins but Alex said they were delicious!


I wanted a cookie I'd enjoy too, so I made these Drunken Cherry Ice Box Cookies. I used the cherries that we had leftover from when we made our Cherry Bounce. By the time I took the photo, this was all that was left! πŸ˜‹


To give us a little break from the egg nog, I made some Sweet Tea to sip on.


I spent about 8 hours preparing this Pretzel Bar and it was well worth it! It was a lot of fun and everything turned out delicious! We had so many leftovers!


Soft Pretzels are delicious but very filling! They were great dipped in my Marinara Sauce.


I tried a new recipe for Pretzel Bites. They are made with Pillsbury Pizza Dough - I don't normally buy that stuff, but they were very good. Sweeter than the soft pretzels and VERY good dipped in honey Dijon mustard!!


I made this dip for Alex - Buffalo Blue Cheese Dip. I can't handle the hotness of the Red Hot Sauce!


By far, this was my favourite dipping sauce - Nacho Cheese Dip. I could probably eat this by the spoonful.


I kind of made this recipe up myself. I saw a few versions of this floating around the internet, but not quite what I had envisioned, so I winged it to an extent - Apple Cinnamon Pretzel Bites with Caramel Dipping Sauce! You need dessert pretzels in your Pretzel Bar!! Actually they reminded us of donut holes. Unfortunately the apples kind of got lost in the shuffle - maybe next time I'll try making an apple sauce to mix into the dough with the chopped apples.


And a little digestif πŸ˜‰, Chocolate Covered Pretzels.


I can't help myself, I have to show you Dancin' Santa again lol...this time I made a little gif from photos I took! I think Alex might be regretting buying this for me because I have this on from the moment I wake up until dinner time lol!  Leo the cat is not even fazed anymore.

πŸŽ…πŸŽΆ "Oh by golly have a holly jolly Christmas, this year!" πŸŽΆ  πŸŽ…


The cats are safe and warm at home watching the Blue Jays in the lilac tree.


Sleepy furballs. I love having the pets with me all day!


Dana's favourite toy is the string rope on the cat tree.

Today is a sewing day! Alex is working on his album today so I have a chance to be sneaky and sew some Christmas gifts! What's going on in your world? 

See you on Thursday for our art date! The theme is: Holiday Stories, Carols and Lore

62 comments:

  1. Oh my gosh, your pretzel bar is amazing! You're right, you do pull out all the stops for holidays. (I am sorry to hear your childhood holidays caused you trauma). I laughed that the cat doesn't even care about your dancing Santa anymore! -Jenn

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  2. Looking at all the wonderful photos...joy joy...then, "Growing up, holidays were always sources of anxiety and fear for me...." Wait. What? Oh no...oh no.

    πŸŽ„

    Glad things have changed and now here you are!


    Peace on Earth

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  3. The pretzel bar looks amazing! I was watching something or another on TV this week and there was a dancing Santa in the background of the set -- I immediately thought of you!

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  4. You sure do know how to put out a spread. Lovely food and liquids to wash it all down. You take beautiful pictures.

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  5. oh my gosh, what a nice tradition. The picture of sleepy pets is so pretty, I like the cat's paw on the middle dog's head, the snuggling into blankies after a snowy romp in the woods.

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  6. So glad to see you didn't go hungry or thirsty while trimming the tree, it all looks so delicious. I LOVE the sound of fruit cake cookies. I baked a fruit cake this week, and made chocolates. Always love to see your furries, they are so gorgeous! Have a lovely week, enjoy your tree and your fab dancing Santa - wish I could still swing my hips like that! Hugs, Valerie

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  7. Wow! I love your traditions and that tree trimming party is over the top!!
    I don't put raisins in my fruitcake cookies, either. Pretzel bar!! I would love that! Thanks for including the links to your recipes. They all sound delicious! Merry Christmas! It will be here before we know it!

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  8. Ohhh what a feast. I can't wait for Thursdays art date. I have my story all ready. Have a nice Sunday.

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  9. Thanks for sharing some of your traditions, the food looks delicious, warm and comforting!

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  10. For some reason last week I bought that same pizza dough and I haven't been inspired to use to make pizza. Maybe I was supposed to make pretzels with it instead! Printing out your recipes to make pretzels and cheese sauce. Thanks, Rain!

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  11. After seeing you tree trimming feast, I am pretty sure I could be in Canada on Dec 10th next year to help lol. Egg not is a seasonal favorite of ours. We spike it with either spiced rum or Crown Royal. Add a little nutmeg on top and we are happy people. I love soft pretzels so will be trying that recipe soon. Give you fur babies ear ribs for me.

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  12. a great tasty pretzel bar!! great !!! the cats and dog grat shots!
    you sewed and I was walking in the storm on the North Sea and taking pictures was so beautiful!! fun Dancin' Santa lol
    good new week
    Elke

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  13. YUM. You have been busy.
    Love the contented fur babies too. They make every day sweeter don't they?

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  14. I love your Santa!
    You are such a cook and baker!

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  15. Rain,
    I appropriating your nacho cheese dip. It sounds yummy than mine. Can you believe it?

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  16. You put so much care and thought into your food that you prepare, I can tell it’s a passion for you, Garry’s mum has a dancing Santa or two, hilarious!

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  17. Yummm....everything looks so tasty! Especially those fruitcake cookies, and I don't even like fruitcake.lol😁 Well done Rain.

    Still sifting through the 300 plus boxes we had in storage, long time, long story. A possible "treasure" showed up in the mix today, fingers and toes crossed it is worth a lot.😊

    Hugs and Happy Week.πŸŽ„

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  18. What a terrific pretzel bar! They sure looked good, so did the fruitcake cookies. I love how your animals are cuddlers. Our kittens are constantly up to mischief and messing with stuff.

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  19. Looks like you are really enjoying Christmas. Wish I could eat pretzels! Merry Christmas! Nancy

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  20. The pretzels look delicious!

    I have actually started making regular old egg nog with milk and eggs. It really is quite delicious (although to be fair, egg yolks sit okay with me).

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  21. I would certainly enjoy decorating the tree at your place, Rain, especially with that pretzel bar and thise cookies. And who doesn’t lime egg nog (not us). I sure hope you will show us photo of your decorated tree, which hopefully got done after all those treats.

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  22. oh i absolutely LOVE your lovely world filled with true happiness and peace dear Rain :)))

    i can feel your excitement from here :)

    this mouthwatering food is soooo COMPELLING believe me ,i hardly stopped myself to jump on your dazzling table full with absolutely DELICIOUS LOOKING DISHES ,i envy Alex who has privilege to taste all this yummmm lol

    you deep connection and involvement in your wonderful home makes it one of the most special one my friend!!!

    haha your dancing santa made me laugh for long ,it took effort to remove eyes from him lol , i bet you enjoying his jolly company thoroughly :)))

    i always love looking at these ADORABLE soothing faces of your pets :) i know it is amazing to have them around as my mom used to have cats and than parrots for years ,i missed them after i got married and moved here ,my eldest son had parrot but due to health issues it was hard for me to keep cleaning the home and his place so he gifted it away :(
    wishing you all the joys in this world dear Rain!
    keep sharing your strength my friend
    it is uplifting :)))
    hugs!

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  23. I could sit on your blog for hours and reach in and eat those snacks!! they all look delicious and love the dancing Santa.

    i am impressed by the fact that people can still make a holiday look so festive. Once most of my family moved away and we go down to my son's house on Christmas (the only son that is local somewhat to me)....being at home now just isn't the same. I haven't decorated for the past two or three years. seeing how joyful you are with your decorating and cooking has truly inspired me.

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  24. Thanks Jenn :) I've been playing Dancin' Santa pretty much non-stop and the pets don't even blink anymore lol!

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  25. Thanks so much Sandi :) All is well now, the past is what is it right? :) I've learned from it and I am very grateful for the happiness I have in my life. :)

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  26. LOL Debra! That's funny, I got into your head buah ha ha ha ha! ;)

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  27. Thanks Gigi :) We live for food here!

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  28. Hi LeeAnna :) I love how our pets all snuggle up with each other. It's very heart warming!

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  29. LOL Valerie, we definitely didn't go hungry or thirsty! :) I thought about using Dancin' Santa as a kind of aerobics instructor so I can swing my hips too! :)

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  30. Thanks Linda :) Christmas is creeping up so quickly!! I love our tree trimming tradition! I have to think about what I'll make for next year! :)

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  31. Hi Nicole :) Oh I can't wait to read your story!! :)

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  32. Thanks Christine :) It was a really fun feast!

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  33. Oh cool Becki :) You were MEANT to make pretzel bites!! Let me know what you think!

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  34. Ha ha Marsha, you and your hubby and your furries are totally invited, but could you handle the cold? ;) I think some spiked egg nog will help with that! We have some Captain Morgan spiced rum! Maybe I'll try that next time. I have another quart of egg nog in the fridge! We have Crown Royal too, never thought of adding it to the nog!

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  35. Thanks Elke :) Walking in a storm on the North Sea...I think I'd rather be drinking egg nog, sewing and dancing with Santa! :)

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  36. Yes Elephant's Child :) The fur babies make every day special! :) I couldn't imagine our home without our pets.

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  37. Oh Jo, that's a compliment!! I hope you like it! I make ours quite mild without too much zip to it, so feel free to add some hot ingredients!

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  38. Thanks Laurie :) I hope my descriptions were enough for you to experience the fun! Garry's mum has more than one Dancing Santa!! I want more!!!

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  39. Thanks Geraldine :) I'm not a fan of fruitcake either! But I tasted parts of the cookies after I picked out the raisins lol and they were pretty good! Oh I'll have to get some more information on your "treasure"!!!

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  40. Thanks Stefanie :) When your kittens grow up a little, they'll settle down - JUST slightly though lol...I always get more photos of the dogs because they're more cuddly and quiet. The cats are usually up to something so shots of them all calm are hard to get!

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  41. Thanks Nancy :) I don't think this recipe would work GF, too bad though!

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  42. Thanks TB :) I'd love to try the homemade egg nog, but me thinks I'd regret it!

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  43. Thanks Dorothy :) I actually have a photo of the tree in the last post (My "cozy" art date post). We try not to have too much egg nog until everything is decorated lol or we get lazy!

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  44. Thanks so much Baili :) You haven't seen the last of Dancin' Santa lol...I took a video of his butt wiggling hee hee, that'll be on the next post! I can't get enough of him. It's such a fun gift! How interesting that you had parrots!! Alex and I love birds, but with the cats, we don't think we could have them as pets. The cats already go crazy when they see birds out the window, having them indoors might drive them more crazy. But we're lucky enough to have many birds who visit our bird feeder. The food this time of year is so much fun to make- and eat! :)

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  45. Thanks Sandy :) That's sweet of you to say that I inspired you. For the longest time, when I lived alone, I never celebrated anything, no decorating, nothing. I felt like its just wasn't worth it. But when I met Alex it all changed, I felt motivated to make our holidays and celebrations the best we've both ever had. It became fun again!

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  46. Rain, if I lived near you I would weigh 400 pounds and have a path wore in the ground between our houses, LOL. The food you prepare always looks scrumptious :) Your husband is a blessed man.

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  47. Fabulous post, your food looks so delicious and WOW your pretzel bar looks amazing.

    I love your Dancing Santa.

    All the best Jan

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  48. Oh my gosh, that pretzel bar! My husband in particular would LOVE that. He's a huge pretzel fan. And I'm going to have to make that sweet tea recipe. Sounds delicious.

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  49. Ha ha ha Connie that made me laugh! :) Thanks so much!

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  50. Thanks Jan :) The pretzel bar was so much fun. The Dancin' Santa is fabulous!! :)

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  51. Hi Martha :) The sweet tea is really good. We like ours sweet so you may have to fiddle with the sweetener depending on your taste! The soft pretzels are a meal in themselves!

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  52. Your pretzel bar is amazing! I used to entertain and make really fancy things for my guests especially at Christmas...now it's just me, myself and I! LOL! I still make it special for me but it took me years to pare down as I was so used to cooking for a big family. None of my children cook like that at all. They don't make big dinners for any holiday. Jim was the cook in our family. He made really good things and he and I used to watch the cooking shows together. It's really nice you and Alex make things special for each other!

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  53. Thanks Sam :) I don't think I've "pared down" as much as I should because I always make too much food! :) I like how you still make everything special even though you are by yourself now, it's important to have fun! :)

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  54. Homemade eggnog, cookies, and a pretzel bar!! Love it! You are living your best life.

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  55. Thanks Jenn :) I'm really trying to enjoy everything! :)

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  56. OMG now I want pretzels so bad. I havnt made any in a long time ... your pretzel bar looks awesome !!! I love this bar idea...lol I have to look into it some more. My kids would love that too. My tree is about to come thru the door. Let the decorating begin. Happy solstice sis 🌞

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  57. OMG - your cooking skills are so amazing!!! Why can't you live right next door to me?!(lol) Ironically, I'm talking about fruitcake over at the blog,and there are your cookies. I'm a fan of cherries, so if you can send a few of those cookies over, I'd be a happy camper. And all those yummy pretzels! Hope your day is great, Rain! Hugs, RO

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  58. Happy Solstice Sis! :) Enjoy your tree decorating! Oh the bar idea...I have that planned for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day too! I love the buffet style of eating! :)

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  59. Thanks so much RO :) I'm so glad you enjoyed the post! Fun that we are N'Sync with our fruitcake talk lol! ;)

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❤ Thanks for your comment, I love hearing from everyone! ❤ Why not join me and my fellow artists every Thursday for TADD? That's Thursday Art and Dinner Date! It's a lot of fun!
Love,
Rain