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Posted by The Galway Girl on 24th December 2009

Twas the Night before Christmas

Christmas is such a wonderful, magical time of year and this poem brings out a lot childhood memories for me.

“Twas the Night before Christmas” by Clement Clark Moore

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there.

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads.
And mamma in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap.

When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below.
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tinny reindeer.

With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name!

“Now Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! On, Cupid! on, on Donner and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!”

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky.
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of Toys, and St Nicholas too.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St Nicholas came with a bound.

He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot.
A bundle of Toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler, just opening his pack.

His eyes-how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow.

The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath.
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook when he laughed, like a bowlful of jelly!

He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself!
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings, then turned with a jerk.
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose!

He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ‘ere he drove out of sight,
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!”

Posted by The Galway Girl on 22nd December 2009

Peanut Butter Bonbons

Peanut butter balls

Peanut Butter Bon-bons

(Also know as Buck-eyes and Peanut Butter Balls)

  • ¾ C. Butter
  • 1 ½ C. Peanut Butter
  • 1 lb. Powdered Sugar
  • 1 Pkg. Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
  • Paraffin Wax

Directions

  1. In medium sauce pan, over medium heat, stir together peanut butter and butter. Cook till smooth and creamy. Remove from heat.
  2. Add powdered sugar and beat until smooth, by hand.
  3. Then, roll mixture into ¾ in. balls and place on baking sheet. Cover and refridgerate over night.
  4. Melt chocolate chips and paraffin* in sauce pan on medium to low heat You may want to use a double broiler). Using a tooth pick dip each ball in the melted chocolate and swirl around until it is completely covered.

*Adding a few shavings of paraffin wax helps the chocolate melt smoother and keeps it from clumping.

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<li><a title=”Anaheim, California Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/anaheim-california-hotels/”>Anaheim</a></li>
<li><a title=”Austin, Texas Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/austin-texas-hotels/”>Austin</a></li>
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<li><a title=”Houston, Texas Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/houston-texas-hotels/”>Houston</a></li>
<li><a title=”Las Vegas, Nevada Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/las-vegas-nevada-hotels/”>Las Vegas</a></li>
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<td style=”width:33%” valign=”top”>
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<li><a title=”Los Angeles, California Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/los-angeles-california-hotels/”>Los Angeles</a></li>
<li><a title=”Miami, Florida Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/miami-florida-hotels/”>Miami</a></li>
<li><a title=”Milwaukee, Wisconsin Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/milwaukee-wisconsin-hotels/”>Milwaukee</a></li>
<li><a title=”Minneapolis, Minnesota Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/minneapolis-minnesota-hotels/”>Minneapolis</a></li>
<li><a title=”Nashville, Tennessee Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/nashville-tennessee-hotels/”>Nashville</a></li>
<li><a title=”New Orleans, Louisiana Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/new-orleans-louisiana-hotels/”>New Orleans</a></li>
<li><a title=”New York City, New York Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/new-york-city-new-york-hotels/”>New York City</a></li>
<li><a title=”Norfolk, Virginia Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/norfolk-virginia-hotels/”>Norfolk</a></li>
<li><a title=”Orlando, Florida Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/orlando-florida-hotels/”>Orlando</a></li>
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<td style=”width:33%” valign=”top”>
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<li><a title=”Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/philadelphia-pennsylvania-hotels/”>Philadelphia</a></li>
<li><a title=”Phoenix, Arizona Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/phoenix-arizona-hotels/”>Phoenix</a></li>
<li><a title=”San Diego, California Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/san-diego-california-hotels/”>San Diego</a></li>
<li><a title=”San Francisco, California Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/san-francisco-california-hotels/”>San Francisco</a></li>
<li><a title=”Seattle, Washington Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/seattle-washington-hotels/”>Seattle</a></li>
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<li><a title=”Washington, DC Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/washington-dc-hotels/”>Washington DC</a></li>
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<table cellpadding=”2″ style=”font-size:13px; font-weight:bold”>
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<th valign=”top” colspan=”3″>Hotels (All Cities)</th>
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<ul>
<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Alabama</p>
<li><a title=”Abbeville, Alabama Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/abbeville-alabama-hotels/”>Abbeville</a></li>
<li><a title=”Alabaster, Alabama Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/alabaster-alabama-hotels/”>Alabaster</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Arizona</p>
<li><a title=”Phoenix, Arizona Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/phoenix-arizona-hotels/”>Phoenix</a></li>
<li><a title=”Tucson, Arizona Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/tucson-arizona-hotels/”>Tucson</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Florida</p>
<li><a title=”Miami, Florida Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/miami-florida-hotels/”>Miami</a></li>
<li><a title=”Orlando, Florida Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/orlando-florida-hotels/”>Orlando</a></li>
<li><a title=”Tampa, Florida Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/tampa-florida-hotels/”>Tampa</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Illinois</p>
<li><a title=”Chicago, Illinois Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/chicago-illinois-hotels/”>Chicago</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Colorado</p>
<li><a title=”Denver, Colorado Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/denver-colorado-hotels/”>Denver</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Louisiana</p>
<li><a title=”New Orleans, Louisiana Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/new-orleans-louisiana-hotels/”>New Orleans</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Norfolk</p>
<li><a title=”Norfolk, Virginia Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/norfolk-virginia-hotels/”>Norfolk</a></li>

</ul>
</td>
<td style=”width:33%” valign=”top”>
<ul>
<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Alaska</p>
<li><a title=”Sitka, Alaska Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/sitka-alaska-hotels/”>Sitka</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Massachusetts</p>
<li><a title=”Boston, Massachusetts Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/boston-massachusetts-hotels/”>Boston</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Michigan</p>
<li><a title=”Detroit, Michigan Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/detroit-michigan-hotels/”>Detroit</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Wisconsin</p>
<li><a title=”Milwaukee, Wisconsin Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/milwaukee-wisconsin-hotels/”>Milwaukee</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Minnesota</p>
<li><a title=”Minneapolis, Minnesota Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/minneapolis-minnesota-hotels/”>Minneapolis</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Pennsylvania</p>
<li><a title=”Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/philadelphia-pennsylvania-hotels/”>Philadelphia</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Washington</p>
<li><a title=”Seattle, Washington Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/seattle-washington-hotels/”>Seattle</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Washington, DC</p>
<li><a title=”Washington, DC Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/washington-dc-hotels/”>Washington DC</a></li>

</ul>
</td>
<td style=”width:33%” valign=”top”>
<ul>
<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>California</p>
<li><a title=”Anaheim, California Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/anaheim-california-hotels/”>Anaheim</a></li>
<li><a title=”Los Angeles, California Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/los-angeles-california-hotels/”>Los Angeles</a></li>
<li><a title=”San Diego, California Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/san-diego-california-hotels/”>San Diego</a></li>
<li><a title=”San Francisco, California Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/san-francisco-california-hotels/”>San Francisco</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Texas</p>
<li><a title=”Austin, Texas Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/austin-texas-hotels/”>Austin</a></li>
<li><a title=”Dallas, Texas Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/dallas-texas-hotels/”>Dallas</a></li>
<li><a title=”Houston, Texas Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/houston-texas-hotels/”>Houston</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Nevada</p>
<li><a title=”Las Vegas, Nevada Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/las-vegas-nevada-hotels/”>Las Vegas</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Missouri</p>
<li><a title=”St. Louis, Missouri Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/st-louis-missouri-hotels/”>St. Louis</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>New York</p>
<li><a title=”New York City, New York Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/new-york-city-new-york-hotels/”>New York City</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Tennessee</p>
<li><a title=”Nashville, Tennessee Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/nashville-tennessee-hotels/”>Nashville</a></li>

<p style=”margin:0px; font-size:14px;”>Wyoming</p>
<li><a title=”Douglas, Wyoming Hotels” href=”/travel/hotels/douglas-wyoming-hotels/”>Douglas</a></li>
</ul>
</td>
</tr>
</table>

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Posted by The Galway Girl on 19th December 2009

10 Favorite Holiday Treats

Christmas Cookie

I have already begun baking like crazy for all the different Holiday events, but now I am about to make the Christmas “must have” treats for me and my family. What’s on this year’s “must have” list? Well here it goes! I will add all recipes that are not already here, over the next couple of days.

  1. Peanut Butter Cookies
  2. GiGi’s Special Sugar Cookies
  3. Microwave Peanut Brittle
  4. Monster Cookies
  5. Peanut Butter Bonbons
  6. “No-Bake” Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies
  7. Cinnamon Hard Candy
  8. Gingerbread Men
  9. White Chocolate Dipped Pretzels
  10. Muddy Buddies
Posted by The Galway Girl on 17th December 2009

Christmas Traditions

Christmas Stockings

Some traditions just can’t be forgotten or left behind. My husband and I decided that we want to carry on special holiday traditions from our families, and pass them on to our “eventual family”.

So this year, we bought our first special Christmas Tree Ornament as a married couple… and yes it was a “First Christmas” ornament. We plan on getting an ornament every year that represents something special that has happened to us that year.

Another tradition, which I know everyone does this, is the Christmas Stocking. But, my husband and I decided to try and make them really fun this year. So it has more fun stuff, not just the regular stuff like new tooth brushes and socks etc.Even our puppy, Daisy, gets a stocking full of toys!

Also, something that my family has done for a long time now is Christmas PJs. Since my husband doesn’t really sleep in pajamas too often he gets Christmas boxers!

I know I have talked about our tradition of the Christmas Countdown before. We won’t start that tradition until we have kids, but it is such a great tradition. You just leave a note in the countdown box everyday in December up to Christmas day and that note has some clues that lead to a “surprise”. It was usually something really small, but I loved hunting for and finding those little surprises as much as opening my presents on Christmas day.

So the important thing in all the traditions is just being together and spending time with the people you love.

Posted by The Galway Girl on 11th December 2009

Polar Express

This is one movie, I just can’t get through Christmas without watching! It has quickly become one of my holiday favorites. Also, a great movie for kids and families.

Here is a little taste! (No pun intended!)

Posted by The Galway Girl on 6th December 2009

Mom’s Potato Soup Recipe

Potato Soup
8-10 Medium sized Potatoes, cut in small squares
2 Cans of Evaporated Milk
Package of Velveeta Cheese, cubed
3 Cups of Cheddar Cheese, shredded
1 Can of Cheddar Cheese Soup
5-6 Pieces of Bacon, cooked and broken up
Salt
Pepper

  • Boil Potatoes in a large pan for about 15 minutes, or until soft. Drain off most of the water.
  • Add in the evaporated milk and the cheese soup. Then, when the soup starts getting hot, add in the cheeses and bacon bits. Even turkey bacon gives it a really good flavor.
  • Salt and Pepper to taste. You may also want to add chopped onions for flavor. (I use the freeze dried ones, because you don’t have to precook them.)
  • Cook at a slow boil for about 15 minutes, or until the soup thickens.
  • Cool for about 10 minutes. Enjoy!*

*Sprinkle some of the shredded cheese, bacon bits, and chives on the top of each bowl to make a pretty presentation.

Posted by The Galway Girl on 5th December 2009

Purse Freak… Guilty as Charged

I have never thought of myself as one of those women who have to have all the latest and trendiest “things”. But I have recently become a huge fan of this one brand of purse… red by Marc Ecko. They are beautiful, even somewhat enchanting…. spoken like a true shopaholic. I bought my first one this past spring and I have loved it so much that I haven’t wanted to change purses since. Finally, I gave myself up and decided to attempt to find a new one that is a little more of a winter friendly color. And of course, I ended up getting one the same brand! I just could not help my self, it has the softest leather, and keeps up so nicely. I love it! LOVE IT. L.O.V.E. I.T.

Ever since my first “red” experience I have just been mesmerized by them and so I thought I would share my story, I am sure that are some equally purse crazed women out there like myself. If that is you I say to you “Happy Hunting!”

In case you are curious about this brand, Amazon is a good place to get them… be careful though, you might just get hooked on them!

Posted by The Galway Girl on 28th November 2009

Wedding Dance… So fun!

Posted by The Galway Girl on 4th November 2009

Dirt Cake

dirt cake

I was a skeptic, but now I love Dirt Cake! Or as my husband usually calls it, mud pie. I used to think this dessert was just like chocolate pudding with some crumbled cookies. But this recipe it is soooo good, and it is super fun to make with the kids!

1.5 package of Oreo Cookies
1 (8 oz.) package of Cream Cheese
1/2 C. Butter, softened
1 C. Powdered Sugar
3 C. Milk
1 (12 oz.) tub of Whip Cream
2 (3 ½ oz.) packages of Instant Pudding, chocolate or vanilla
1/2 t. Vanilla
1 package of Gummy Worms/ Creepy Crawlers

  • Crush all the Oreo Cookies and set aside.
  • Mix together the butter, cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla. Set aside
  • Mix together the pudding and the milk. Then fold together the cream cheese mixture and the pudding. Add the whip cream to the mixture.
  • Layer the crushed cookies, and the pudding mixture starting with the cookies. 3 layers of cookies and 2 layers of the pudding mixture.

*You can add gummy worms to the top layer of oreos to make it fun for kids. You can also put it in a new, clean flower pot and stuff a fake flower down in the middle of the “dirt” to add a little whimsy. That would be super cute for a garden theme party.

Posted by The Galway Girl on 29th October 2009

Pumpkin Carving 2009

My husband and I love to carve pumpkins every year, and we just finished our new ones! They are monsters!

Monster pumpkins

Monster pumpkins3