Catching up with the Kelnhofers-123

This week on Catching up with the Kelnhofers, we’re all about the holidays!  I’m sharing what recipes to bake if you’re making sweets and what to eat for Christmas dinner.

Four Kids

The holiday season is definitely underway here at our house. We’re baking cookies and doing all the holiday crafts (like making mini gingerbread houses via a Gingerbread House kit I got at Walmart – they have awesome ‘contactless pick up’ where you can order whatever online and then go pick it up and they put it in your trunk). 

Gingerbread Houses

If you have older kids, you can make your own mini gingerbread houses out of graham crackers 

New on the blog header

New posts from this week on

Christmas pull apart wreath and biscotti
Christmas pull apart wreath | Chocolate cherry biscotti

What to cook for Christmas

Christmas dinner recipes
Pork roast | Prime rib | Beef tenderloin

What to Make newsletter header

If you’re looking for some fun holiday things to make in the kitchen:

Christmas pinwheel wrap, hot chocolate, food gifts
Christmas tree pinwheel wraps | Hot chocolate | Food gifts
  • Christmas tree pinwheelsTake a break from all those sweets for these cheddar bacon ranch pinwheels, use green tortillas to make them extra festive!
  • Hot chocolate mixHot cocoa season is definitely in full swing. Here is a recipe for how to make an incredible hot chocolate mix, and how to have a hot cocoa bar!
  • Food gift ideas If you’re looking for something thoughtful to give that impossible to shop for someone or want to give something special, you can make and give a food gift!
  • Gingerbread cut out cookies – so much fun to make with the kids
  • Snowman pancakes – I talk about these all of the time, but we LOVE pancakes on the weekends and they’re easy to make ahead!

Don’t forget, if you’re looking for holiday recipes/inspiration, there’s a ‘Holiday Recipes’ category. 

Reader comments header

In case you’re not sold on my sugar cookie recipe, here are a few more reader comments to convince you:

Sugar Cookies on a sheet pan
Sugar cookies
  • “Thank you . Your recipe is amazing!! It held all the shapes I used . After trying different recipes with no success and lost all my hope for making a cookies for my kids finally I made one after finding your website. Thank you once again.”
  • “These cookies are soooooo good and so easy to make!”
  • “Super good on their own. I also made some cinnamon sugar butter to put on top before putting in the freezer and then baking and it tastes just like a cinnamon cookie it’s delicious.”

Reader Recreations Header

If you’re enjoying brunch on Christmas day, giving this 5 ingredient French toast casserole a try is a great idea!

Reader recreation French toast casserole

And if you’re making a holiday recipe of mine, I’d love to see it!

Share any SweetPhi recipe you're making

Things I'm Loving

Loving my 26oz. Weck jars
Weck Jars
  • I so love our arched mirror that didn’t break the bank and is back in stock!!…at Home Depot of all places. It’s one of my favorite purchases of last year.
Things I'm Loving, arched mirror
Arched mirror

Amazon item you didn't know you needed header

Three tier cooling rack
Cooling rack

What I'm Reading header

  • I’m really all in on the cheesy Christmasy books, I’m reading/listening to Dear Santa by Debbie Macomber and loving it (it’s also not a million hours long which I appreciate right now) 
Dear Santa
Dear Santa

Personal Stories header

  • Life with baby Sam – he’s just such a sweetie, I even got in a little work time while he snuggled in my arms.

Life with Baby Same

  • Outing with princess Frankie – Frankie woke up and told Nick she wanted to go to a flower store and get pink flowers with mom, so we did just that 😉 and we got her a pretty pink ornament cookie, such a fun girl outing.

Frankie running errands

  • Kitchen helpers – the twins love to help cook, they’re really good at stirring so we make things that don’t have to be suuuuper exact yet still turn out – like these amazing banana muffins. Also, I make these banana pancakes with them at least once a month (only 3 ingredients!)

Freddie and Frankie stirring

  • Blue Eyes- the twins have these beautiful blue eyes (which I still think is nuts because Nick and I have brown eyes – means we both carried the recessive blue-eye gene, there’s a 25% of that!) The sun catches their eyes and they look so bright blue sometimes! Here are the silly blue eyed twins. 

Blue eyed kids

  • Reading in Ben’s bed – the twins grab books and read in Ben’s bed whenever he leaves his room on the weekends, they think they’re being so sneaky.

Reading in bed

  • Big window pictures – we have these beautiful big windows in the kids play room, but we hate when they lean on them…of course they ALWAYS go up to the windows and lean/sit and stare at us, pretending not to hear.

Kids posing in window for pictures

The Final Note header


  • Easy Baked Brie – only 2 ingredients and such a good holiday appetizer.
Easy Baked Brie is a great holiday appetizer
Baked brie
  • And these super easy candied nuts are going to be made on repeat over the holidays!
Candied nuts in white bowl
Candied nuts


  • First I have a ‘don’t watch’ lol – I watched Father Christmas Is Back and was truly mystified. The plot is weird and the whole thing is just odd. I put a little poll on Insta and 100% of people said it was an oddball, lol.  
What to Watch
Father Christmas is Back | The Hating Game
  • The second ‘watch’ is actually one on my list. I LOVED the book The Hating Game by Sally Thorn it was a steamier romance but cute story, and now they’re turning it into a movie – cannot wait to watch it. 


  • If you’re looking for a fun gift, I cannot recommend Universal Yums enough, we got a subscription this year for our family and it’s been SO FUN to try treats from around the world, the kids all love it!!  
Universal Yums
Universal Yums

Do you have any fun Christmas traditions (I shared a post about ours).  I’d love to know, so just leave a comment below and let me know!

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