Thursday, December 13, 2012

Wall tree with real cookie ornaments

I really love my big tree, but this wall tree is very special to me.  When my kids were really little and we lived in a tiny condo across the street from our house now, there was no space for a big tree.  My mom let me have this 4' wall tree that is flat on one side and hangs on the wall.  It was perfect for our tiny family and tiny space.  
As a kid, I couldn't wait to help my mom decorate the tree.  It wasn't so much stringing the lights and placing the ornaments, as it was holding each ornament and remembering where it came from or who gifted it to us.  I have a fancy tree with no kid ornaments.  No homemade snowflakes or kindergarten picture frames.  No candy cane reindeer.  No salt dough characters.
I had the kids help decorate some cookie ornaments that we could place on the wall tree.  You know my favorites?  The kid ones.  Just look at the purple heart one.  It makes my heart melt. The red burst...my kid did that.  I love how they all go together...just like we go together so well.
 I used Lilaloa's Chocolate Roll Out Cookie Recipe.
1 cup butter
1/4 cup shortening
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
2/3 cup cocoa
3 cups flour
She recommends baking at 375F for 6 1/2 minutes.  I adjusted the baking temperature and time to 355F for 6-7 min.  I bake at high altitude and baking at a higher temperature means the baked goods will bake faster.  I love these cookies right out of the oven.  The texture of the dough is like gingerbread dough and very easy to roll & cut.  The texture of the cookie is a bit sugar gritty- which I love.  The cookies were soft for a while ,but didn't stay as soft as my regular sugar cookie recipe.  I'll definitely use this recipe again.

 To cut the small circle to use the ornament shape as an ornament, use a decorator tip (Wilton #5)
Now get ready to decorate!  Pipe royal icing and immediately sprinkle with sanding sugar (one color at a time).  I had several sprinkles and paper plates ready for the kids.  Fold the paper plate to use as a funnel to return the excess sugar to the sprinkle container.  Other tools I have handy while decorating:  Exacto knife (if you need to clean up or straighten an icing edge), paint brush (to help brush away excess sanding sugar), and tweezers (to place sprinkles and candies).
 Pipe small dots to adhere sugar pearls with a tweezer.
 Here are the snowflakes we made a couple of weeks ago and added to the tree.
 I only used one large snowflake (7.5") on the wall tree, but the larger snowflakes on a larger tree would be amazing.
 This about sums it up...Love.
I don't ever want to lose that 8 year old girl in me and I want my kids to look back with the same kind of fond memories.
When you get caught up in making everything picture perfect (guilty!), make sure you let your kids contribute in some way to your holiday decorating.

1 comment :

  1. These are beautiful and I love your story. We have several trees, one with all the family ornaments that bring back memories, one with all the homemade ornaments from the children, and others that fit a particular theme. While beautiful, those trees aren't nearly as fun to decorate as the family and homemade ornament trees are because of the memories those ornaments bring back. I am featuring your post this week for our Holiday Cookie Recipe Swap. Come grab a featured button at http://thedomesticatedprincess.com.

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