Sharing a little “Christmas Magic”

Santa appears everywhere, holiday lights twinkle, snow glistens, carols fill the airwaves, holiday cards fill our mailbox, irresistible treats line the countertop and beautifully wrapped gifts nestle under the Christmas tree.  For all of these reasons and more, I believe Christmas is the most magical time of year!

Speaking of Christmas magic, have you seen Santa Claus’ PNP (Portable North Pole)? Santa is taking time out of his busy day in the toy shop to send personalized messages to girls and boys.  I can only imagine how excited a child would be to watch his or her own personal video from Santa!  Perhaps there is a little one with whom you can share this magical Santa memory.

Santa’s journey from the North Pole to Iowa always intrigued me as a kid, and it was even more fun to track Santa’s progress with my own small children.  Their little faces would light up like Rudolph’s nose as soon as the meteorologist spotted Santa’s sleigh on the Super Doppler radar.

Because Santa will soon be making his way to each little “good” girl’s and boy’s home, I’ve decided to share a recipe (even though it’s not Friday) that will surely put a smile on the jolly man’s face.   I always requested that my mom make “Ho Ho Cupcakes” for my birthday parties in grade school or whenever we hosted 4-H meetings at our house. (The “Ho Ho” in this recipe is really named for the Hostess snack cakes, but I figure it’s also symbolic of this season.  Maybe if I’m feeling really ambitious, I’ll decorate the tops like Santa’s face.  Hmm…)  Everyone who ate one of these cupcakes loved it, so I honestly believed my mom worked magic in the kitchen.  (To this day, I still do!)  Perhaps if I leave one or two of these cupcakes for Santa this year, he’ll leave me something extra special.  After all, Mom always said, “Believe and you will receive.”

It’s certainly fun to receive, but my parents also taught me that it’s better to give.  This time of year many people open their hearts for those who are less fortunate, and that’s why I’d like to share the following heart-warming story with you.  “Christmas Adventure with Grandma” serves as a great reminder of what this season is all about – magic!

“Ho Ho” Cupcakes



Make a boxed cake mix according to the directions on the package.  (My mom says banana is good, but I’ll take her word for it.  Why waste those calories on banana when you could have chocolate?) And nothing goes better with a chocolate cream-filled cupcake than a big glass of milk, so remember to leave one for Santa!


Cream Filling:

  • Beat 3/4 cup white sugar and 1 cup Crisco.
  • Add 1/2 cup evaporated milk with 1½ teaspoon vanilla, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1½ tablespoon water.
  • Mix well and add 3/4 cup powdered sugar.
  • Force into middle of cupcakes with a cake decorator tube.


Photo from Brown Eyes Baker