Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Let the Festivities Begin!

Merry Christmas, y'all! Christmas is in full swing at the Obenhaus home. Round one took place Saturday when my oldest daughter and her family made the trek from Oklahoma. All the kids and grandkids were together for a day of fun.
Our daughters and sons-in-law. As you can tell, somebody did not want their picture taken. Can you guess which one?
The grands managed to entertain themselves until it was time to open presents. Although, every now and then, one would trickle into the den and ask, "When can we open presents?"
Of course, it's not only the little ones who get bored.
Hubby and my mom.
Looks like our grandpup, Scout (who is a character in my newly contracted book ), wants to sit with Big Daddy.
Finally, everyone was present so the frenzy of gifts could start.
Well, there's our granddaughter and our youngest grandson, Elijah. Not sure where all the rest slipped off to, but this may not be good.
One of the grandkids favorite treats is one that really requires no cooking/baking all. It's so easy, even the kids can help. No skill involved. Only love and a little patience.
Chocolate-Dipped Pretzel Rods are as pretty and festive as they are tasty.
And this is all you need:
Yep, pretzel rods and Almond Bark. You can do white or chocolate almond bark, but we prefer the white. There are a couple of optional items that I'll get to later.
First, you'll want to chop up your almond bark. Doesn't have to be itty bitty pieces, but the big chunks take longer to melt. You can melt it in the microwave, per the instructions on the package, or melt them in a saucepan over the lowest heat setting. That's the method I chose.
Melt and stir until everything is nice and smooth.
Now pour the melted candy into a tall, narrow glass.
You don't have to do it this way, but I find it easier.
Mmm...wouldn't you like a nice long drink of that?
Then place the cup in a container of hot water to keep it from thickening while you're working.
Now dip your pretzel rods.
(Like you really needed a picture for this)
When you remove the pretzel, tap the top several times with a rubber spatula to help shed the excess coating. Too much coating and you'll have a puddle when you lay them on your waxed or parchment paper.
Continue until all the pretzels are coated.
I only made 20. You'll find out why in a minute.
Also, you can see I put sprinkles on the ones to the right. Do this right after coating, before you lay them on the paper.
The rest, I wanted add a different touch.
These Wilton Candy Melts are so easy to work with and come in just about any color imaginable. But, this being Christmas, I went with the red.
Just melt them per the package instructions. I put them in a glass measuring cup in the microwave.
Then I transferred the melted candy to a zip-top bag and snipped off a tiny section of one corner so I could drizzle the candy over the dipped pretzels.
I usually hold the pretzels when drizzling, hence the puddle of drizzled candy.
But the end product looks much better using this method. At least for me.
Once the pretzels are dry/set, I slip them into these neat little pretzel bags I found at Walmart.
20 in a package.
Keeps them fresh and makes them great for transporting, too.
(also protects them from all those little hands when they get to grabbing)
 Don't they look great? 
Festive and ready to party.
Tonight will be Christmas, round two, exchanging gifts with our youngest daughter and her husband, then tomorrow we'll celebrate with our middle daughter, our boys, my mother and our granddaughter. This is the first year we've had to spread it out like this, but hey...sometimes you gotta be flexible and simply extend the fun.
I pray your Christmas is joyous one. Whether you're surrounded by family or by yourself, may the spirit of the season fill your heart and mind as we dwell on the real reason for the season.
Thank You, God, for the greatest gift we could ever receive... Jesus!
Merry Christmas! 


  1. Hello? Does your dtr look like you or what???

    Dipped pretzels is a huge weakness of mine! Thanks for the hint on the bags. Makes it easier for mailing as well.

    Merry Christmas, Mindy and congrats on your new contract!!!!

    1. Thanks, Tina! It's been a very exciting week.

      Which daughter were you referring to?

  2. Is that brilliant or what?? And I sort of laughed at the 'like you needed a picture' part because... I did. That glass was genius.

    I've seen these but thought they were WAY too much work. I really think we could pull this off and not have it turn into a 'fail' blog post.

    Great idea, Mindy!! And your family looks wonderful. merry Christmas!

    1. Virginia, your kids would have a ball making these. You could have an assembly line. The older ones could dip, some could sprinkle, some could drizzle... Of course they'd all love the eating part.:)

  3. Thanks for sharing your holidays with us!!! Lucky you with your multiple celebrating. The excitement never ends! And congrats on your new contract...and including a dog in the story!!!! :-)

    1. Dogs and kids, Kav. That's all I know. Along with all the kids, we had five dogs celebrating too. We'd had an inch and half of rain the day before, so the backyard was a muddy mess. The canine crowd loved it. Not so much for those us of who had to keep wiping their paws, though. :)

  4. Merry Christmas, Mindy and all!

    I looks like you have a full house for Christmas - what a blessing!

    And the pretzels...I've never made them because the one time I tried was a FAIL. The glass is genius. Just pure genius. :)

    1. It is fun when we all get together, Jan. Chaos, but fun. With pretzel crumbs everywhere. :)

  5. Mindy, the glass idea is brilliant. I've made these so many times trying to roll them in the icing. Now I want to run out and buy pretzel rods to make some.
    Merry Christmas to all.

  6. Mary, I'm always looking to make things easier. I figured since I was only doing one pretzel at a time, a tall, skinny glass would work better. And it fits the bill perfectly. But keeping it in a hot water bath is important.

    Merry Christmas to you!

  7. Oh, Mindy, I just came backwards and found these!!!! I love them! I must buy some longer pretzel rods and play. I've got the short ones for the kids (and Dave) but I wonder if they'd be too short? I'll try them and see. Love the red on white effect!