Saturday, December 6, 2014

Dec 6 St. Nicholas Feast Day

The one thing I've enjoyed quite a bit since becoming Catholic are all the wonderful feast days. You have the opportunity to learn about an amazing Saint and you get to eat. I mean, how can it get any better than that?

One of our favorite feast days ( of many) is the Feast of St. Nicholas.  Each year the girls set out their shoes to see what Saint Nick brings them the next day .
Every year they get a Matchbox car, an orange ( in this case a clementine orange that fits in their shoes) , and  Saint Nicholas coins.
This year I was able to find a download of pictures I was able to put on the gold coins I normally get at the grocery store.
You ask yourself , she has girls, why a Matchbox car?  Well that has just been a tradition that their father started one year when he realized that he was finally outnumbered and we didn't have any real cool boy toys in the house.  The girls don't seem to mind and they like to see what kind of car they get each year.

Now back to the St. Nick coins.  This year I was so happy to find a download of actual Saint Nicholas icons that I could cut out and put on the coins.  This was such a hit with the girls that Maggie tried to take the extra coins I had on our Saint Nick cookie plate because she wanted to collect all of the pictured coins.
I had actually stumbled upon them at the last moment when I was actually looking up something else for our feast for the next day on the website Catholic Cuisine (click this for the link).  They really are beautiful, and I think it truly added to the plainness of the gold coin, and gave it some actual meaning, don't you think?

Also to back track a little bit the girls and I had tons of fun the night before making Saint Nick cookies.  I mean, really the internet is great and so chalk full of amazing ideas out there for this time of the year. How could we not take advantage of some of these already made ideas this year?

So while big sis had to go to work last night. The younger three and I went to work  fixing up some yummy fare  to eat for the next day.  We started first with the Saint Nicholas cookies.  These were very simple to make and easy enough for them to work on their own.  The idea came from another one of my favorite blogs : Shower of Roses.  These were basically made with Nutter Butter cookies, mini chocolate chips , mini M&Ms , red sprinkles and frosting ( the original recipe calls for those melted white chocolate ).

                                            Kat , Maggie and H working on their Santa cookies

      They turned out pretty cute I must say.   We did have to use a plastic sandwich bag to pipe the crosses on the cookies because I some how lost my cake tip, but it worked just fine.  What we did with the cookies was smear the frosting on the bottom and then sprinkled the coconut on. Maggie doesn't care for coconut so I told her to just frost the bottoms and not add the coconut to them. 

I will say if I had read the instructions on the blog better than I did before I went grocery shopping. I would have known that it was melted chocolate and not white frosting. My bad really, but they really did taste very good this way too.

While the girls were finishing the cookies I started in on what was going to be for the next morning.  I also found this recipe on Catholic Cuisine and quickly went to work on it. I mean, cheesecake and cherries all in the same sentence sounds amazing!

What better way to start off our morning with a Cherry Cheese Coffee Cake Candy Cane?

This was so yummy! I made it the night before, put it in the fridge and then when I got up just put it in the oven one more time to warm it up just a little bit. Of course if you like cold pastries you can eat it cold too.  So we started off our day with a breakfast of scrambled eggs, hot cocoa , cherry cheese coffee cake, and the girls always take their clementine oranges and eat them along with their breakfast too.                                                                                                                                                        

After that we had a nice afternoon and the two older girls got ready to go to a Christmas dance over at our local high school. We only live two blocks away from the school and it was something fun for them to go out and do. Not to mention Katie actually had a friend ask her to the dance so the girls got all dressed up and had fun talking with their friends and dancing. How fast time has flown.

In the meantime  while the two older girls were out enjoying the evening. Hannah parted her ways upstairs to play with her tablet and Maggie and I broke out the Saint Nicholas memory game I printed out from the St. Nicholas Center website.  I know I'm always up for a game of memory, and the neat thing is we both ended up with the same amount of cards in the end. So we both won! 

After all of this today. We ended the evening with a good book. There are just so many books out there and I honestly have a long ways to go in our book collection , but I pulled out a book that I had found at a yard sale this summer.  I'm glad I did buy it because it was an amazing little gem. Jacob's Gift by Max Lucado.

The story starts with a young boy who is working in a wood shop (circa before Jesus' birth) and his teacher (Rabbi) notices his one little apprentice  gets into his craft quite a bit. One day his Rabbi announces that whoever builds the best project will work with him to build the new synagogue.  Jacob gets very excited and wants to be the one who wins this spot, he just has to be selected.  As the Rabbi notices this , he reminds Jacob that he has a gift and like all gifts they must be shared with others.  So Jacob gets to work on what will be his best project ever. In the end Jacob faces a tough choice, and with that he finds that a new baby (Jesus) is without a place to sleep.  

This book is definitely a book to get for Christmas time. I love how the Rabbi teaches young Jacob that like all gifts , they are given to us by God, and when you give a gift to one of God's children, that you are indeed giving a gift to God.  

I think this all chalks up our day quite nicely, don't you think?   I'm curious as to what everyone else does for their own Saint Nicholas Day.  Feel free to share in the comments what your family does. 

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