Spreading holiday cheer

Here’s how I spread holiday cheer today:

1) Eggnog cake. Delicious, delicious eggnog cake. As good as the cake smelled, it tasted even better. I used this recipe from Mother Thyme with a few tweaks (more eggs, less flour, and added spices). I’m not even a fan of eggnog and I thought this cake was amazing. And my co-workers loved it, of course. I’ll post the recipe soon, but if you’re wondering whether a cake with eggnog would be good, the answer is a resounding yes! Despite striving to eat healthily this week I had two slices of cake…and I wanted more. I’ll have to make this for a holiday party just so I can have some more! (And because I have a lot of leftover eggnog.)

2) Peppermint Oreos. When I saw this holiday variation of my co-workers’ favorite cookies at the grocery store I had to buy them. We’re having an event this week and we always go through quite a few boxes of Oreos before they’re over. What can I say? We work hard, we get the munchies. At this point we are serious Oreos connoisseurs, so when they’re available, holiday varieties of the sandwich cookies are very popular. We try them all, but I can’t say everyone goes back for seconds – the candy corn Oreos were truly awful. Stay far, far away from them. But I liked the peppermint Oreos a lot. I might have been the Christmas association that drew me in, but I thought they tasted really good. I only ate two of them, but in addition to the slices of eggnog cake today wasn’t very healthy at all. But it was worth it!

3) Homemade cookies…for my co-workers out East. On Friday I shipped a box of cookies to them so that they would arrive on Monday (and be taken to work by the person I sent them to today). I got instant messages from several people today saying how awesome they were. Apparently the apple butter cookies were the clear favorites. (Don’t worry, I’ll post the recipe soon.) One of the girls out there said they were being hoarded by one of the guys and he got irritated when anyone else took one. She was worried he was going to find a sharp object to defend them! I seriously love my co-workers. That’s why I send them baked goods at any opportunity!

4) Potluck recipes. Next Tuesday is my favorite day of the year – the annual holiday potluck! I’m still looking forward to eating my weight in homemade scones, but as far as my own contribution goes, I think I’ll do something a little different. There’s already going to be so much good food that anything I provide is just going to get lost in the shuffle. So I think I’ll make some Crockpot hot chocolate for the breakfast buffet (it’ll be great for scone-dipping) and some Crockpot mulled apple cider to go with lunch. If I have time this weekend I’ll make some test batches to see how they turn out. With less than a week until the potluck I’d better get cracking!

5) Christmas music. Yep, not all holiday cheer has to involve calories! While I was driving home today I realized it was the perfect afternoon to go running. It was a bit warmer than it has been recently (the high was in the 60s rather than the 50s), I’d had plenty of water to drink at work, and after a full night’s sleep I wasn’t completely exhausted. Plus I hadn’t exercised in a week so I really needed to get off my butt and do something. My original plan after work was to do some Christmas shopping, but I figured it would be a shame to waste such a beautiful afternoon. So I went home, changed into some workout clothes (as fast as possible since my apartment was freezing), and went running. And what did I listen to while I was jogging down the street in Seal Beach? Why Christmas music, of course! I wish I could say that it was enjoyable run, but it was really tough since I haven’t been keeping it up. Luckily the Christmas music made my run more enjoyable. I liked checking out all of the great light displays that have been going up in Seal Beach too. This town really knows how to celebrate Christmas.