Fourth Day of Christmas: Miracle on 34th Street

The 12 Book-Days of Christmas – Mini Beans to Fill you with Cheer!literary-advent-6-edited-1DAY 4 of 12

“Christmas isn’t just a day. It’s a frame of mind.”


Miracle on 34th Street
by Valentine Davies
You have probably all seen the movie, but it does not compare to the book (as usual.) I like the movie and actually the book is a nice extension of it. I was fortunate enough to have read it after the movie, which I think helps. It is a delightful book. The character of Kris Kringle is so enjoyable and jolly, you can’t help but love it. The story is wholesome and teaches us so many important lessons. If you have not read it, I urge you to do so, I think you will be happy you did.

Rated: 4.4 on amazon.com

“Well, this is the Imagination. And once you get there you can do almost anything you want.” 

12 Drinks of Christmas:

Book Bean: Candy Cane Cream
In a sauce pan heat up milk and vanilla extract. Add white chocolate and candy cane pieces (or candy cane Hershey kisses work marvelously.) Whisk together until smooth. d2bbd5ab8d46516ae7d69e94998c9279-edited
Add mixture to blender and blend until frothy. Add in a dollop of whip and blend (you can also whip up your own whip cream which is double delicious.) Serve with a candy cane to swirl in extra yum.

“Faith is believing in things when common sense tells you not to,” he replied. “And you’ve just got too much common sense.”
~Valentine DaviesMiracle on 34th Street

 

Advertisements

Third Day of Christmas: Rudolph

The 12 Book-Days of Christmas – Mini Beans to Fill you with Cheer!
literary-advent-6-edited-1Day 3 of 12:

“Could it be that some of you are not acquainted with the story of Rudolph?
Well pull up an ice block and lend an ear.”

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
by Thea Feldman Illustrated by Erwin Madrid
The original television special first aired on NBC December 6, 1964. Fifty years later, it has become a beloved Christmas classic―capturing the heart and wonder of generations of fans.
This prose picture book about self-acceptance features Rudolph, along with his pals Hermey, the elf who dreams of becoming a dentist, and Yukon Cornelius, a prospector. They escape an Abominable Snow Monster, and end up on the Island of Misfit Toys. After several hair-raising adventures they return to Christmastown and this time, despite their differences, are all welcomed back to the fold.

Rated 4.7 on amazon.com

12 drinks of Christmas!

cherryamarettosteamer2b-edited


Book Bean:
Cherry Steamer
As red as Rudolph’s nose and as sweet as him too!
Steam milk with a tish of vanilla extract. Add grenadine to mug (to taste.) Pour in milk and stir. Add whip and place a tasty glowing cherry on top 😉

XFDiAuTttoMx.gif

Ahh. I love this Christmasy time of year.
Especially when everything is running happy and smooth, like it is this season.”
~Santa

Second Day of Christmas: Little Women

The 12 Book-Days of Christmas – Mini Beans to Fill you with Cheer!
literary-advent-6-edited-1
DAY 2 of 12

“Every few weeks she would shut herself up in her room, put on her scribbling suit, and fall into a vortex, as she expressed it, writing away at her novel with all her heart and soul, for till that was finished she could find no peace.” 

Little Women
by Louisa May Alcott

I love reading this Novel at Christmas time. It is warm and filled with meaning and joy. It also helps one to count and appreciate their blessings. The novel follows the lives of four sisters—Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy March—detailing their passage from childhood to womanhood, and is loosely based on the author and her three sisters.

Rated: 4.3 on amazon.com

“I’d rather take coffee than compliments just now.” 

12 drinks of Christmas!

Book Bean: Orange Cocoa
Orange_Hot_Chocolate - Edited.jpgIn a saucepan heat 1-1.5 cup milk, .5-1 cup half n’half, a couple strips of orange-rind and 1 full slice of orange over medium heat. When hot add in 1/2 cup of chocolate chips ( like 45% cocoa semi-sweets.) Add 1 tsp cocoa and 2 tsp powdered sugar. Whisk well until melted and smooth. Top with whip, orange rind for garnish,
a sprinkle of orange-sugar, and spice of choice (clove n cinnamon.) 
Orange Infused Sugar: Mix 1/4 tsp of orange extract with 1 cup granulated sugar in a bag. Mush around and mix until evenly distributed. Spread sugar on large rimmed baking sheet. Let stand until sugar is dried (30 min.)

“Love is a great beautifier.” 
~Louisa May Alcott, Little Women

First Day of Christmas: A Christmas Carol

The 12 Book-Days of Christmas – Mini Beans to Fill you with Cheer!
literary-advent-6-edited-1Day 1 of 12:

“Darkness was cheap, and Scrooge liked it.”

A Christmas Carol
By  Charles Dickens

Tiny Tim, Ghosts, and of course the infamous Scrooge! This fantastic and endearing Christmas classic is a must read for children and adults. It is a great book for older children to read or for adults to read aloud by the fire with family. There are also a few amazing audible version that make great background ambiance.

Rated 4.7 on amazon.com

Cozy up with this book and a make sure to have a warm drink
to keep out the ghostly chills.

12 drinks of Christmas!

unnamedBook Bean: Cinnamon Cocoa Crunch
Something with a little bite in the spirit of scrooge:
In a large pot add 1 cup milk per person. Once the milk is warm whisk in 1 tsp dutch cocoa powder to 2 tsps of sugar (I use bakers sugar or confection sugar so it mixes smooth)
PER cup of milk! Bring to a low simmer.  Whisk in 1/4 tsp of cinnamon per cup of milk, or to taste. Add in 1 Tbls of cream/half n’half per cup. Top with whip and sprinkle with red hots.

a_christmas_carol.jpeg“I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach!”
― Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol

WISO: The Thanksgiving Visitor

I thought I would share with you all what I’m sipping on today. It is a short story written by Truman Capote called “The Thanksgiving Visitor.” This story was included in a book I have with two other shorts “A Christmas Memory” and “One Christmas.”

(Click picture &/or title for more info.)

I have not finished this story yet, too much Holiday chatter and bustle. Not that I am complaining, I am so thankful for having a family and a place to chat and bustle about with. So far it is a delightful read. I am enjoying the characters and looking forward to seeing how it plays out. It’s old fashion but in the best way. I am also really looking forward to delving into the Christmas stories next! At the stroke of midnight of course 😉
Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetThe Thanksgiving Visitor
Book Bean: Black Coffee 
Better to enjoy all the sweet treats with 🙂
I’m enjoying a smooth medium roast, with mild spice and roasty-sweet notes
I read the other two short stories and discovered that all three stories are linked. They have the same main character and supporting character. I thought they were a nice pleasant read. The main character was likable enough, but it was his friend Sook that I really enjoyed. I liked reading the stories out of order, because it left a bit of mystery to the story (which was later revealed.) I read “The Thanksgiving Visitor” first, then “A Christmas Memory,” and “One Christmas” last.
Fun Fact: Truman Capote also wrote “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”

 

Fireside Fall Favorites

Leaves-Books-Coffee
It’s that time of year when the hearth is warmed and the mugs are filled, and we all need a good book and a hot cup of goodness to curl up with and enjoy.


Here is a list of great books & drinks for fireside reading:

A Parchment of Leaves
by Silas House

Named Kentucky Novel of the Year and won a special achievement award from the Fellowship of Southern Writers. In 1917 rural Kentucky, Saul Sullivan marries a beautiful Cherokee woman named Vine. They weather the storm of prejudice, but when Saul temporarily moves away to work a better job, his younger brother makes advances on Vine that are not welcome and ultimately lead to tragedy.

Rated 4.5 on amazon.com

Book Bean: Zesty Orange Mocha
A magical mix of cinnamon & orange in a mocha that’s to die for!
orange-mocha-recipe-1.jpgBrew strong coffee or pull 1 shot of epresso. Heat 4-5oz of milk in sauce pan to a gentle simmer & reduce heat, whisk in 3 squares of dark chocolate until smooth, add 2-3 drops of orange extract, add cinnamon to taste. Add mixture to your coffee. Top with marshmallows, garnish with orange zest & cinnamon.


Wuthering Heights

by Emily Bronte

Considered lurid and shocking by mid-19th-century standards, Wuthering Heights was initially thought to be such a publishing risk that its author, Emily Brontë, was asked to pay some of the publication costs. A somber tale of consuming passions and vengeance played out against the lonely moors of northern England, the book proved to be one of the most enduring classics of English literature.
Rated 4.5 on amazon.com
images-11.jpg
Book Bean: Cinnamint Tea
Mint tea with a dash of cream sprinkled with cinnamon and/or a cinnamon stick.


The Thanksgiving Visitor

by Truman Capote

Another masterpiece by the great American writer Truman Capote is brought to an audience of all ages. Buddy and his closest friend, his eccentric, elderly cousin, Miss Sook (the memorable characters from Capote’s A Christmas Memory) love preparing their old country house for Thanksgiving. But there’s trouble in the air.
Rated 4.7 on amazon.com

Book Bean: Pumpkin au lait
background-beans-caffeine-633481.jpgPull a shot of espresso add to mug (or 6-10oz of strong coffee & less milk.) In sauce pan heat 8oz of Milk (of choice) gently bring to simmer, whisk in 1tbsp of pumpkin (or pumpkin pie for sweet) puree, remove from heat, add mixture to mug & stir. Top with clove & cinnamon. 

The Hearth and Eagle
by Anya Seton

Seton embarked on a fervent search for her forebears that led her to Marblehead, Massachusetts, a “sea-girdled town of rocks and winding lanes and clustered old houses.” There she found not only an ancestor, but also the setting for this, her fourth novel.

Rated 4.4 on amazon.com

images
Book Bean:
Hazelnut Brew
Pick up some unsalted hazelnuts. Put the beans and nuts in a coffee grinder. Measure them out to a ratio of two parts beans to one part nuts (or to preference.) Brew together in a French press. Serve with warm or steamed milk/cream and top with vanilla bean powder & nutmeg.


Far from the Madding Crowd

by Thomas Hardy

Independent and spirited Bathsheba Everdene has come to Weatherbury to take up her position as a farmer on the largest estate in the area. Her bold presence draws three very different suitors: the gentleman-farmer Boldwood, the soldier-seducer Sergeant Troy, and the devoted shepherd Gabriel Oak.
Rated 4.1 on amazon.com

Book Bean: Countryside Cocoa
vegan-pumpkin-hot-chocolate-editedHeat and simmer milk of choice, melt/ mix in cocoa powder and/or dark chocolate, and dark brown sugar to taste. Add mix to a blender and spoon in apprx. 1/4 cup pumpkin puree, a dash of pumpkin spice, a drop or two of orange extract. Top with cream and a sprinkle of spice.

Mind of the Raven
by Bernd Heinrich

Heinrich involves us in his quest to get inside the mind of the raven. But as animals can be spied on only by getting quite close, Heinrich adopts ravens, thereby becoming a “raven father”, as well as observing them in their natural habitat. He studies their daily routines and, in the process, paints a vivid picture of the ravens’ world.

Rated 4.4 on amazon.com

Book Bean: Dark Delights
4.jpgNothing fancy on this one, just get some good quality Dark Roast Coffee and drink it black while nibbling on some delicious chocolate. My favorite is a dark chocolate bar with cranberry and sugared orange.

 

The Cider House Rules
by John Irving
Set in rural Maine in the first half of the twentieth century, Irving’s most beloved Novel tells the story of Dr. Wilbur Larch—saint and obstetrician, founder and director of the orphanage in the town of St. Cloud’s, ether addict and abortionist. It is also the story of Dr. Larch’s favorite orphan, Homer Wells, who is never adopted.

Rated 4.3 on amazon.com

Book Bean: Crisp Apple Chai
applepiechai.jpgIn saucepan heat up half water half apple juice or cider and simmer with green apple slices.  Add in Chai powder mixture or concentrate. Add mixture to blender and blend till smooth. Serve with garnish of apple and topped with whip and/or caramel, and a sprinkle of cinnamon.

The Lay of the Land
by Richard Ford

Frank Bascombe has been many things to many people. His uncertain youth behind him, we follow him through three days during the autumn of 2000, when his trade as a realtor on the Jersey Shore is thriving. But as a presidential election hangs in the balance, and a post-nuclear family Thanksgiving looms before him, Frank discovers that what he terms “the Permanent Period” is fraught with unforeseen perils.

Rated 3.9 on amazon.com

Espresso Canarian Espresso Zaperoco CoffeeBook Bean: Bourbon Bombón
Carefully pour sweet condensed milk in a small glass, Pour in 1 shot quality Bourbon, then top with espresso shot. Serve showing the layers, Stir before consuming.


A Patchwork Planet

by Anne Tyler

This novel introduces 30-year-old misfit Barnaby Gaitlin, a renegade who is actually a kind-hearted man struggling to turn his life around. A New York Times Notable Book.

David Morse’s reading in a calm, even tone reflects the unruffled attitude of the central character in this story.
Rated 4.0 on amazon.com

Book Bean: Spiced Steamer
spiced-vanilla-pumpkin-milk-steamer-5-edited.jpgSteam or simmer rice milk (almond is also nice) over low heat. Mix in agave syrup, vanilla bean, cinnamon, nutmeg, dash (very small) of cayenne, all to preferred taste. Pour in cup and sprinkle lightly with spices, garnish with cinnamon sticks, and let it warm your soul!

What are your Favorite Fall Books to Curl up with?