Thursday, March 6, 2014

baking shamrock sugar cookies & painting bird houses . . . a rainy day fun day!

We enjoyed four days of glorious rain last week . . . and I had every intention of staying inside and enjoying it!

The kids and I are always on the go, so the rain gave me the perfect 'excuse' to slow down, enjoy a fire, BAKE, create, and relax . . . and we did all of that!

I planned an afternoon of fun for the kids and I . . . and turned our kitchen island into a big crafting and baking station. The kids painted a bird house and we decorated shamrock cookies.

Our oldest daughter, Charley, designed the rainbow roof and front of the house all on her own; and then enlisted the help of her younger siblings to help paint the sides and rear. They painted it completely on their own, with no help. I LOVE how it turned out!

Because we're celebrating March with rainbows and shamrocks, the kids' birdhouse found a special place among the flowers in our dining room.

We also decorated shamrock sugar cookies with a simple glaze and sanding sugar.  I had the kids wash their hands, and then I showed them how to finger-paint the glaze on top of the cookies and then sprinkle the sugar on top.  I placed shallow bowls under the cookies to catch falling sugar . . . it helps make for easy clean up.

And here's the best part, later that afternoon we saw a rainbow outside our dining room window. It was the perfect ending to our rainy day fun day!

mint shamrock sugar cookies
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
12 Tablespoons (1 ½  sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
1 egg, room temperature
 powder sugar (instead of flour) for rolling out dough

.     .     .     .     .     .     .     .     .    

To make the cookies, in a bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt . . . set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the butter and granulated sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in the vanilla, peppermint, and egg. Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture in three additions, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition. Mix until just combined.

Form the dough into a ball, wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or as long as overnight.

Preheat an oven to 350°F.

Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. 

On a lightly floured powder sugar surface, roll out the dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Using cookie cutters, cut out desired shapes. Transfer to the prepared baking sheets, spacing cookies about 2 inches apart, and bake until just golden around the edges, 10 to 15 minutes, depending on the size of the cookies. Transfer the pans to wire racks and let cool for 5 minutes, then remove the cookies from the pans and let cool completely.

Makes 10 to 20 cookies, depending on cutter size.

Sugar Cookie GLAZE
2 ¼  cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
2 Tablespoons light corn syrup
1 ½  to 2 Tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

.     .     .     .     .     .     .     .     .

Combine ingredients and mix until smooth
Spread on top of cookies
Sprinkle GREEN sanding sugar on top of GLAZE


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  1. Yum! Those cookies look great!
    Thanks for stopping by and linking up with me today!

  2. Sugar cookies are my absolute favorite cookies! Your shamrock cookies are beautiful and I can only imagine how tasty they are. Thanks for the recipe.

    Big Texas Hugs,
    Susan and Bentley

  3. These flocked shamrock cookies look great! :D

  4. Your cookies looks wonderful! I would love it if you would share these on my Tasty Tuesday Linky party, going on now!

  5. Oh your cookies are beautiful and festive, Suzanne! The recipe sounds delicious! Your children did a terrific job with the birdhouse -- nothing nicer than a rainbow and fresh cookies to end a rainy day in the kitchen. Thank you for sharing with us. :)

    Visiting from Inspire Me Tuesday -- have a wonderful week.

    Denise at Forest Manor

  6. The flowers, the birdhouse and the cookies looks wonderful. What a beautiful pictures you got... nice job!

  7. fun! The birdhouse looks nice and cheery too. Thank you for sharing on Foodie Friday

  8. Perfect rainy day fun with the kids. Seeing the rainbow was the absolute perfect end of the day of fun! Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  9. I love the shamrocks and birdhouses. How fun!

  10. Anonymous8:19 AM

    What a wonderful way to spend some rainy days, it sounds just wonderful Suzanne! Thanks for linking up to Sweet and Savoury Sunday, stop by and link up again. Have a great day!! Laura@Baking in Pyjamas


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