Monday, December 27, 2010

Soup's On!

Here's an idea if you're looking for something to do with your leftover Christmas ham.  We made a delicious split pea soup, and it was so easy to make that I thought I'd share the recipe.  

1 ham bone 
1 onion 
3 carrotts
2 stalks of celery
1 bag of split peas
1/8 teaspoon marjoram
Salt and Pepper to taste

Chop veggies and combine all ingredients into a pot with 7 cups of water.  Cook on low for 5 hours.

 Remove ham bone, stir, and enjoy!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Cookies

When I was a little girl I read something very scary about Santa's belly.  It said that since Santa eats cookies at everyone's house on Christmas Eve, it would only be a matter of time before his belly got too big and he wouldn't be able to fit down any chimneys!  I was so worried that I decided we'd give Santa carrots and celery instead.

Since he's still fitting down chimneys that must not be true :) We decided it'd be fun to make some delicious Christmas cookies for his visit this year!  We made yummy Almond Crescent Cookies.  They were so easy to make I thought I would share the recipe that I found on

Mix 1 cup butter, 2/3 cup sugar, 1tsp almond extract, 1tsp vanilla extract

Stir in 2.5 cups flour, and 1 cup ground almonds
Take a generous tablespoon of the dough, roll it into a ball, and then shape it into a crescent and place it on parchment paper.

Bake at 350°F for 15mins.  When you take them out, sprinkle on some powdered sugar and enjoy!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Weekend Roundup

The weather's been so nice, it hardly feels like the weekend before Christmas.  Hopefully we'll get some snow just in time for a White Christmas!  We had such a busy weekend and it went by way too fast.  Friday was pizza night.  We like to make it on whole wheat pita bread with as many veggies as possible - a somewhat healthier version :)  They're also perfect because on individual pizzas everyone gets to choose their own toppings.

Saturday morning we officially finished up our Christmas shopping.  We also bought a few more Christmas decorations (some places already have their Christmas decorations 40% off - so they were too hard to pass up).  Jack and his Daddy already put them up and they look great!

Our family craft this weekend was making a gingerbread house (this kit was from Michael's for $3).

We felt like watching another Christmas movie, so we rented A Christmas Carol - the new Disney version (it was good, but a little scarier than I expected).

While driving around checking out some of the Christmas Light winners, we were surprised by this house:
It did NOT make the list of winners - they totally should have, we could see their house from Wildcat!

On Sunday we made chili and watched the Broncos lose.  Dan (always the optimist) says "At least the Broncos will have a better draft pick!"  I hope you all had a great weekend - only 5 more days till Christmas!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Fun for the Family

Christmas Eve is officially only one week away!  I hope everyone is enjoying this busy time with family.  Unless you're lucky enough to be all done with your Christmas shopping.....I highly recommend finishing it up, so you can relax next week, and not spend your time running around looking for last minute gifts.  Although I started my Christmas shopping on Black Friday, I still have one last present to buy.

I believe it's important to remember the true meaning of Christmas.  Donating to a charity is a great way to teach your children about giving to others.  One of my favorite charities is the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation.  They help less fortunate children experience the joy of Christmas!  Babies R Us and Toys R Us are still accepting cash donations (toy donations ended on December 5th). All toys are distributed locally and given to children within the communities they are donated.  Every bit helps and the donations start at just $1.  Making a difference in a child's life is priceless :)  If you want to donate online click here.  

The HRCA has finished the judging for the Christmas Lights, and if you are interested in checking out the winners, click here for a map!  I remember last year driving by a house that had their Christmas lights choreographed to music.  I found out two of the winners (that I know of) will be doing that this year.  When you are driving past the house on White Oak Ln, tune your car radio to 88.5.  The home on Meyerwood Cir has a donation box out front to benefit cerebral palsy, and be sure to set your car radio to 97.7.  Don't forget the hot cocoa! 

Another fun idea for this weekend is to get your family together for a Christmas craft.  Gingerbread houses are very festive and so much fun to make.  Michael's sells gingerbread house kits that have everything you will need to make a one of a kind decoration that your family is sure to enjoy.

Unfortunately I have not heard of any places Santa will be visiting in Highlands Ranch this weekend, I guess he is just too busy at the North Pole.

If you are hosting Christmas this year, take time this weekend to get one or two little things out of the way like your centerpiece or place cards, hopefully that will make next week a little less stressful - if that's possible :)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Baby and Me for Free

The Highlands Ranch Library has opened registration for their Baby Early Literacy Experience.  Usually this class fills up on the first day of registration, when I spoke with the librarian she was shocked that they still have 12 open spots!  I hear that this class is great for moms and babies to learn together, and it is free :)  You and your baby (0-12 months old) will enjoy stories, songs, nursery rhymes, peek-a-boo, and other simple games.  The class is an eight week session on Mondays at 11am from January 10 - March 14 (excluding holidays).  To register call the library at 303-791-7323.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Fun for the Family

As a Mom, the weekdays are so busy that you suddenly look up and it's already Friday!  I wanted to give Moms a place to go to get plenty of fun ideas for family activities on the weekend. 

Earlier I posted about Breakfast with Santa and Free Visit with Santa. Both of those events take place this Saturday, December 11th.  Another free activity your family might enjoy is a chance to see some of Santa's Reindeer.  They'll be at Murdoch's this Saturday from 11am - 3pm.  Murdoch's is located on the west side of HR at Santa Fe and Highlands Ranch Parkway.  If you're looking for something outdoor and active, HRCA offers outdoor ice skating at the Town Center North. They're open on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 6pm.  Admission is $4, but children under five are $3.  Skate rental is $2 per person.  It might be nice to take advantage of this while it's not too cold.

Christmas Eve is only two weeks away, so if you want to feel productive (or just need an excuse to go shopping) you can finish getting your gifts :)  Whatever you decide, remember to have fun!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Naughty or Nice?

Santa can send your child a personalized video message! First, Santa needs your help to see if your child's been naughty or nice:) See kids, Santa does check with your Parents before he decides if he should bring you those presents you've been asking for.

The website is:

Just select 'Prepare a message' to get started. I highly recommend uploading some pictures to give it a personal touch! It will ask you some questions about your child and then Santa will send you an email with the video. Priceless!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Activity Guide

By now you should have received your Highlands Ranch Activity Guide in the mail.  With all of the activities to choose from, there is something for everyone.  Don't put off registering, last summer we were on the waiting list for the Explorer Baby swim class and we ended up not getting in so we had to wait for the next month.  I highly recommend the Mommy and Me class, we took it when Jack was four months old, and it was so much fun!  It was so cute seeing all of the little ones interacting  - he had never been around that many babies, and he loved all the songs and games.  It was also a great way to meet other new moms!  Many people that live in the Ranch are from all over so it is always nice to make new friends and connect with others.  Have Fun!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Breaking News!!!

The Denver Broncos just fired their head coach, Josh McDaniels.  He seemed like a really nice coach.  When we went to the Broncos training camp this past summer at Dove Valley, an ice cream truck came out after practice, and the players got ice cream as well as all of the kids that came to watch.

I guess nice isn't what wins games.  The Broncos have lost 17 out of their last 22 games, after starting out 6 and 0 when McDaniels took over last season.  A lot of people weren't happy with the players that he traded or his draft picks.  It will be interesting to see who will become the new head coach for the Denver Broncos!

Santa Claus is coming to town....

You still have a chance to make sure your children are on Santa's "Nice" list.  He is going to be at the Highlands Ranch Metro District Office on Saturday, December 11th from 9am - 1pm.  Best of all it's free!  They are located at 62 Plaza Drive (on the corner of Broadway & Plaza - across from the Northridge rec center).  Don't forget to bring your camera for pictures with Santa!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Weekend Roundup

I always feel like the weekends go by so fast, and this weekend was no exception.  On Friday we went to the Hometown Holiday at the Town Center.  We saw santa arrive on his sleigh and he brought two of his reindeer, Dasher and Dancer, the other's must have been resting up for Christmas Eve!  

They had a countdown for Santa to light the Christmas tree in the Town Center and a lot of vendors from the local businesses gave away samples and coupons.  We decided not to wait in the long line to see Santa but it was a very festive event and a lot of people came out to celebrate!  We had such a great time that Jack decided to leave a souvenir - one of his shoes :)

Saturday we took Jack to see Santa at Murdoch's.  I had never been in the store, but it was really nice and a lot bigger than it looks from the outside.  At first Jack was a bit freaked out - I don't think he has ever seen anyone with a beard that big - but then he was actually okay sitting on Santa's lap (with me right next to him).  We also went to the High School State Championship Football game at Invesco Field and saw Valor Christian win state!  It was Jack's first time at a football game that big and he really enjoyed all of the action!  

Sunday we slept in until 9am - yeah!  I cannot remember the last time I slept in that late, I am pretty sure it has been over a year.  We had a very relaxing day and watched Miracle on 34th Street, which is a classic!  Unfortunately I didn't get any Christmas shopping done, but there is always next weekend.  I hope everyone had a great weekend!

Holiday Happenings

There is so much going on this time of year that I cannot possibly post everything.  On the HRCA website, they have a page with the details on all of the Holiday Events.

Check out all of the Highlands Ranch Holiday Happenings:

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Holiday Concert

Another upcoming event for the whole family!  Celebrate the season with the Swing Shift Jazz Band.  This Holiday Concert is Friday, December 17th, 7:00pm - 8:00pm at Southridge.  Admission is $5 for members and kids under two are free on a parent's lap.

A Christmas Carol

If your children enjoy music and you are looking for a free family activity, you might want to check out A Christmas Carol.  Thursday, December 16th at 6:30pm at Southridge students of the KidStage theater program will be performing A Christmas Carol.  It sounds like it will be a good time.  Admission is free, but tickets are required and can be picked up at the registration desk.

Breakfast with Santa

Holidays are so much fun, especially when you have children!  Going to see Santa is a magical memory for everyone.  Next Saturday, December 11th at 9:00am - 10:30am Eastridge is hosting Breakfast with Santa.  The cost is $11 per adult, $9 per child, (1 and under are free - but must sit on a parent's lap).  You are welcome to bring your camera and take your own pictures - perfect for emailing to Grandma and Grandpa!  If I hear of any upcoming free Santa visits I will be sure to post them. 

Christmas Decorations

I hope everyone has their lights up!  We have been really enjoying all of the decorations.  Last Sunday after the Broncos lost we decided to get in the car with some hot cocoa, turn on Christmas music, and drive around looking at all of the Christmas Lights.  We had a fun time getting in the holiday spirit and best of all - it was free!  December 13th is the HRCA judging day for the Holiday House Decorating Contest.

Valor Wins State!

Valor Christian High School won the 4A Football State Championship today!!  

The Valor Eagles defeated Wheat Ridge High School at Invesco Field with a final score of 38-8.  Awesome job!  
The game was very exciting and so much fun!


Welcome to Highlands Ranch Mom!  My family and I love living in Highlands Ranch and I created this blog to share news and events about our great community.  There are always so many fun activities around town and I hope to post the details here so you and your family can experience this town!  Feel free to email with comments or news that you would like to share.  Enjoy!