Pajama Eve

Image(Gratuitous – My Kid was/is a Super Cute Kid Photo)

Every family has their own blend of holiday traditions, at this time of year. My favorite is actually one I inherited from my ex in-laws; and although I didn’t keep the husband, I did keep Pajama Eve. Every person who spends Christmas Eve with me receives a new pair of pajamas to impress Santa, with cookies and hot cocoa on the side.

Even though my son knows what to expect, there is a part of him that is still excited to see what new set of PJ’s he is getting. It allows him the opportunity to open one present on Christmas Eve. Which used to be enough, but in recent years he now spends at least fifteen minutes trying to weasel one more present out of me before bed.  I suppose that is the new addition to the tradition, until he is grown. At least I hope it ends when he is grown.  🙂

It really gets everyone in the spirit of giving and receiving. Plus, who doesn’t love new warm pajamas on a cold winters night?

My other favorite tradition is having gooey, cinammoney (it should be a word, don’t you think?) pastries prepped and ready to bake Christmas morning. This is more important to me than whatever might be for dinner. I have included one recipe for this delightful treat below, but there are many varieties to choose from. I generally lean towards the ones with icing, go big or go back to bed!

Before I take my leave I just wanted to express how grateful we all are to our readers. The success we have had with our new Christmas on Main Street Boxed Set has really touched all of us here. We have been the #1 Inspirational Best Seller for more than a week and continue to rank in the top 1-3 in Romance and Anthology Categories. If you don’t have your copy yet, click the cover on the side bar and see what all the fuss is about!

Writing books is a career, true. But it is also a huge expression of who we all are or dream to be and to have it so well received has been thrilling for all of us! So, thank you again for all of your support, reviews and referrals. We are blessed! Happy Holidays and please share your traditions with us in the comments, maybe we will be inspired to try something new.


CHRISTMAS TEA RING 2009_1214SwedishTeaRing0014

1 (1 pound) loaf frozen bread dough,
thawed (or make your own)
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 tablespoon milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Roll bread dough into a rectangle 8 inches wide and 15 inches long. Spread butter over the bread, leaving about 1/2 inch of a long edge unbuttered. Mix brown sugar, cinnamon, and flour in a bowl and sprinkle the mixture over the buttered part of the dough.
2. Starting with the long edge opposite the unbuttered edge, tightly roll the dough over the filling; seal the roll along the unbuttered edge to make a log.
3. Lightly grease a 12-inch round cake pan or baking dish; place dough into the pan and form a ring, pinching the two ends together to seal. Use kitchen scissors or sharp knife to make cuts 3/4 inch deep into the outside of the ring. Twist the cut sections of dough slightly to reveal filling.
4. Cover the tea ring with a cloth, place into a warm area, and let rise until doubled, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
6. Bake tea ring in the preheated oven until lightly browned, 25 to 30 minutes. Cover with a sheet of aluminum foil after 15 minutes if tea ring starts to brown too quickly. Let tea ring cool in pan for about 10 minutes before removing to finish cooling on a wire rack.
7. Combine confectioners’ sugar, milk, and vanilla extract in a bowl to make a smooth frosting. Spread top of the tea ring with frosting.
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11 Responses to Pajama Eve

  1. Tori Scott says:

    Looks really good! Unfortunately, with our youngest daughter here we can’t even have anything with gluten in the house this year. Our Christmas tradition is a Christmas morning buffet that covers the entire family-sized table, offering everything from cinnamon rolls to shrimp cocktail. This year I’m having to revise the menu. No more powdered-sugar donuts, cheese balls with Ritz crackers, croissants with smoked ham. We’ll keep the shrimp cocktail and add gluten-free meatballs with dipping sauce, bacon-wrapped egg cups, fresh fruit with cream-cheese dip, gluten-free sausage, good-quality hard cheeses with gluten-free crackers, nuts, sliced ham, and a variety of Christmas candies. Then there will be the usual orange juice, hot chocolate, sparkling grape juice, and a bottle of champagne for the adults to add to their orange juice if desired. I love doing this, because it means no cooking until dinnertime, so I can enjoy watching the grandkids open and play with their presents instead of slaving over the stove.


  2. E. Ayers says:

    Oh, Kelly, that so funny. We never called it Pajama Eve but I grew up on that one present under the tree. Actually, two. One was always pj’s and then I got to pick one. Well, sort of…I’d want to open something and my mom would tell me no, because it would ruin my whole Christmas. Oh, gee, thanks. That meant I was getting…insert that year’s biggest want! So why can’t I open it if I know what it is?

    So when mine were little, I started my own tradition. The Thanksgiving gift. Usually when the children were small it was the cutest pair of PJ’s with a Christmas theme, but as they got older (teens) it might have been a Xmas themed sweatshirt or other item. Whatever it was, was part of the Xmas budget. And with our goofy weather that is apt to swing from 80F to 22F between Thanksgiving and Christmas, often a pair of fuzzy, cuddly PJ’s was wrapped and under the tree. Wrong place when it was dropping below freezing!

    I extended this funny tradition to include my sister’s children. Then one year I decide they were all too big and didn’t need their early Xmas gift on Thanksgiving. You never heard such whining even by the oldest who was probably 15 at the time. I handed him the keys and told them they were in the trunk of the car!

    As grown men and women, they probably don’t remember half of what they got on Xmas, but they always remember that their Auntie Eez gave them the “bestest” pajamas! Hey, if you are the aunt you might as well be famous for something and warm fuzzy pajamas is about as good as it gets!


    • Uh-oh, does this mean my son will still beg for more gifts even as an adult? 🙂 I guess we all get used to a tradition and even if we are all grown-up we still want the holidays to feel the same. Love that they cared enough to be upset!!


  3. Jill James says:

    We got to open 1 gift on Christmas Eve. It was always pj’s. I could never figure out how my mom managed to hand us that one gift year after year. LOL


  4. Reblogged this on Kelly Rae & Jocelyn Bell Books and commented:
    My post on Christmas Traditions on The Authors of Main Street today, try the recipe it’s YUMMY!!!


  5. Well at least you’ll have bacon. I am a vegetarian, but I must admit we have bacon once or twice a month! LOL


  6. leighmorgan1 says:

    Kelly, I LOVE the idea of Christmas Eve Jams. My children love to be in their P.J.s then anyway and this is simply perfect! The recipe sounds fantastic and this element of this month’s post is proving to be one of my favorites. I’m a foodie…what can I say. Lovely post. Wishing you and your family a Happy Holiday.


  7. Carol says:

    Sweetest photo of your son! Love, love the Christmas Eve Jams. Yes, cinammoney should be a word. 🙂 The Christmas Tea Ring looks yummy, I’ll have to make one for Christmas morning. The kids spend Christmas Eve with us, dinner and giving of gifts. Christmas morning we leave around seven for more gifts and a huge breakfast. We spend until around noon with the kids, then head home. We used to visit friends and or family in the afternoon, but Mom is worn out from all the hustle and bustle, so we kick back and wait for visitors. Sounds like a lot of fun around your house for Christmas Eve and Christmas. Have a wonderful Christmas.


  8. monarisk says:

    Kelly, my daughter does the same now. She always have the same pjs for her two daughters and for her nephew and niece. It’s adorable to see the four kids wearing the same pjs on Christmas morning and running around my place. No more present for the adults, but the four kids open their presents on Christmas Eve before dinner. I usually have the Christmas Eve dinner and Christmas Day lunch cooked ahead of time to be able to enjoy the games and chats.


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