happy Christmas tears

No doubt. Salt Lake City is one of the greatest places on earth to celebrate Christmas– piles of snow, skiing, the lights at Temple Square and one glorious event after another.

Erik arrived home after a week of traveling just in time for the Tabernacle Choir Christmas Concert. We went with Benny-boy and the lovely Miss M. I’ve never double-dated with one of my children before but it was surprisingly unawkward and fun.

Sorry, I only have a pic of me and the mister. I know you’d rather see Ben and THE GIRL.

If you’ve been to one of the Tab Choir Christmas concerts before, you know it is the epitome of Christmas joy. If you haven’t, I recommend you beg, borrow and crawl on your hands and knees to obtain entrance. The tickets are free but always in great demand.

They pull out all the stops for this concert– Broadway singers, dancers, bell ringers, drums, a full orchestra and of course, the choir. Every song was fantastic, but when they sang Henry Longfellow’s “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day” I cried so hard that I soaked my shirtsleeves. You can catch the 2006 performance on PBS Dec. 22nd at 9 p.m. You’ll thank me later. I promise.

Saturday, my friend Cindy surprised Mary and I with tickets to the Nutcracker. Tchaikovsky’s ballet certainly isn’t a tear jerker, but I had to wipe my eyes the entire time because I simply couldn’t believe I was sitting on the 3rd row with my little girl on my lap. Who knew life could be so impossibly sweet?

We canceled our plans last night and snuggled in for– in my humble opinion– the greatest movie ever made: “It’s a Wonderful Life.” And again, of course, I cried. Haven’t all of us felt at time that our life is worthless, meaningless? That we’ve abandoned our dreams for practicalities? And don’t we all pray that, like George Bailey, we truly have made the world a happier place?

And to go with the movie? Candy cane brownies. Which are simply so wonderful they make everyone cry tears of joy.

1 c. butter
2 c. sugar
1 cup cocoa
1 tsp. vanilla
dash salt
4 eggs
1/4 c. milk
1 1/4 c. flour

mix and bake at 325.

1/2 cup butter
4 cups powdered sugar
8 crushed candy canes

mix and frost

2 cups chocolate chips
1/2 cup butter

microwave for 90 seconds stir and pour
sprinkle with a few more crushed canes.


December 13, 2008
December 18, 2008



  1. katherine

    December 15, 2008

    Sounds like you guys had a great weekend!!!!

  2. Cheryl

    December 15, 2008

    I went to the MoTab Concert last night! It was fabulous. Loved it, loved it, but how could I not?

    I agree; SLC is a great place for Christmas. Too bad I live in Provo. *snort 🙂

  3. Blue

    December 15, 2008

    tonight the kids and i turned the tv on to see NOVA, but instead of NOVA they were doing the PBS broadcast of the MoTab Christmas special from some time…was it last year they had the Kings Singers?

    Anyway, it was their telethon fundraiser show, and was the first broadcast of that particular performance. It’ll be shown nationally a couple times in the next 2 weeks for people not in the intermountain west.

    I’d never heard of the production before. If I hadn’t seen that show tonight, I wouldn’t have known what you were talking about when I read your post tonight. So perhaps next year we’ll hear about it in advance and try to get there. There are so many things, like this, that we just never even knew about that happen here. Need to carpe diem more often!

    Those are such pretty pictures! I ♥ the one of you and The Man. You are simply beautiful Michelle! You need to let someone else get behind the lens more often.

  4. GeorgiaBecksteads

    December 15, 2008

    I honestly don’t miss the snow, but everything else sounds wonderful!

  5. jennie w.

    December 15, 2008

    Whoa, that’s a lot of crying. Was it the Christmas spirit or just that time of the month?

    P.S. You guys are so cute!

  6. Jodie

    December 15, 2008

    Those brownies are now high on my list of things to make this Christmas. I love the photo of the girls ready to see the show. They are dressed so sweet. I have all boys. I’m missing out.

  7. Michelle

    December 15, 2008

    oh Jennie- I’m just a Christmas crier– every program, every musical performance, every bright-eyed child… they all bring me to tears.

  8. Christie

    December 16, 2008

    I love Christmas for all these reasons. No other time do we examine ourselves so closely, and come away liking what we see.

    And my thighs thank you for yet another fattening recipe to make them grow larger.

  9. m_and_m

    December 16, 2008

    Awesome! All of it. Lots of sweetness going on.

    That pic of the little girls is PRICELESS.

  10. m_and_m

    December 16, 2008

    And I am still so sad…I could have gone to the concert but had a family party — one of those you can’t miss, ya know?

    I did get to go to Jon Schmidt, though, and that was pretty amazing.

  11. Tracy

    December 16, 2008

    Love the pics! ..and thanks for the recipe. Yummy!

  12. twoelves

    December 16, 2008

    What a perfect post. Don’t we all need some of those “It’s a Wonderful Life” moments. I always miss Utah in the winter. It’s been really cold, but we haven’t had a drop of snow to show for it!

  13. Blue

    December 16, 2008

    “I’m just a Christmas crier– every program, every musical performance, …they all bring me to tears.”

    yeah, I was regretting not bringing the whole box of Puff’s with lotion to this morning’s gig. That puddle on the floor around you was a slip-hazard! 😉

  14. Denise

    December 16, 2008

    You and Erik are still a striking couple. I love the song, “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day.” It reminds me of a Christmas, many years ago, when Grandma (Lea) pulled me into her lap on the back porch glider and read me the words. Then, with tears in her eyes, she explained what the words meant to her as she waited for Grandpa to return from WWII. So, I would have been crying to. Shoot, I’m crying now.

  15. Alyson (New England Living)

    December 18, 2008

    Beautiful photos. That top one was like a piece of art!

    I feel the same about where I live – such a great place to spend Christmas, especially when we take a day trip into NYC.

    I never did see that concert when I lived there. I was so bad at taking advantage of those things.

  16. Chelle

    December 18, 2008

    I’ve been happy-Christmas-tearing a whole lot this week. Another reason I adore you so… xo

  17. Lauri

    December 18, 2008

    THANK YOU, THANK YOU for this YUMMY recipe. My boys will be forever grateful!

  18. Suzie Petunia

    December 22, 2008

    I just printed this so I can go and make this for my family on this snowy, Sunday evening. There is something about being snowed-in that makes me want to bake. (boredom?)

    I can’t remember how I came across your blog, but I see that you are friends with Chelle, who is a friend of mine. We met through the blogs, but have actually met in person and ran the SLC marathon together last year.

  19. www.lifetrekkingcoach.com

    December 23, 2008

    XOXO =)

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    November 22, 2013

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