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10 Ways to Celebrate Christmas in July

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It’s always time to celebrate Christmas, especially during Christmas in July! We’ve got 10 fun ways to incorporate a little jingle into your everyday.

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Make Christmas Cookies
The best ornaments are edible, like these gingerbread ones that are fun to make, bake, and use to decorate for Christmas in July.

Gingerbread Ornaments with Marble Icing Recipe

INGREDIENTS:

COOKIE:

  • 3 cups of flour (plus more for rolling out cookies)
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3⁄4 cup butter, room temp
  • 3⁄4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1⁄2 cup molasses
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

BORDER:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla or other flavoring extract
  • 2 to 2 1/2 tablespoons milk or water
  • Food coloring (optional)

FLOOD ICING:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla or other flavoring extract
  • 2 1/2 to 3 tablespoons milk or water
  • Food coloring (optional)

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, ginger, cinnamon, baking soda, cloves, allspice, and salt. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and brown sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Continue to beat while adding the molasses, whip until incorporated. Add egg, beat to combine, then add vanilla and continue beating on medium speed for an additional 2 minutes. On low speed, slowly add the dry ingredients and mix just until combined.
  3. Transfer the dough to a flat surface and flatten into a disk. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least three hours, or up to 5 days.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350of. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  5. Divide the chilled dough into four equal quarters, leaving three quarters in the refrigerator. Flour a flat work surface (be generous) and roll out one piece of dough to a thickness of about 1⁄4 inch. Using a 3 1⁄2–inch circular cookie cutter, cut out as many cookies as possible. Place the cookies on the prepared cookie sheets, about 1 inch apart. Gather all the dough scraps into a ball, reroll, cut, and repeat until no more cookies can be cut.
  6. Bake the cookies for 8-10 minutes, until slightly raised. Allow cookies to cool on cookie sheet for 10 minutes.
  7. Using a spatula, remove the cookies from the cookie sheets, transferring to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
  8. Repeat steps 17-21 until dough is used up.
  9. Once cookies are cool, use icing to decorate as desired.

Flood & Border Icing:

  1. Prepare the border icing. Place the powdered sugar, vanilla, and 2 tablespoons of milk or water for the border icing in a medium bowl and stir together with a spoon or a fork until smooth. It should be quite thick, and if you drizzle a little from your spoon, the ribbon should hold for a few seconds before melting back into the icing. This border icing should be just thick enough to pour easily. If desired, add food coloring to this border icing now.
  2. Transfer the border icing to a squeeze bottle. Insert a small funnel into the mouth of a squeeze bottle. Spoon some of the border icing into the funnel and let it drip into the bottle. Since this icing is so thick, it can be difficult to get it to drop into the bottle — you can squeeze the bottle to suction the icing and start it flowing. If it still won't start flowing, add more milk or water one teaspoon at a time until just barely thin enough to pour (be careful of adding too much or else the border icing will pool instead of maintaining a border). Once flowing, it can still take a few minutes for all the icing to funnel into the bottle. Prepare your flood icing while you wait.
  3. Prepare the flood icing. Place the powdered sugar, vanilla and 2 1/2 tablespoons of milk or water for the flood icing in a bowl and stir together with a spoon or a fork until smooth. This icing should still be fairly thick, but it should drizzle easily and a bit of drizzled icing should sink immediately back into the icing. If desired, add food coloring to the flood icing now.

Icing:
Transfer the flood icing to a squeeze bottle. Clean and dry the funnel and insert it into a clean squeeze bottle. Pour the border icing into the bottle; this icing should be thin enough to funnel easily into the bottle. If necessary, add milk or water 1 tablespoon at a time until a thin, pourable consistency is reached.

  1. Outline and flood the cookies with icing: using the border icing, draw outlines around each of the cookies. Fill in the insides of the cookies with flood icing. For more details on this step, read our tutorial on how to decorate cookies with icing above.
  2. Draw a squiggle in contrasting icing: while the iced cookie is still wet, quickly draw a squiggle of contrasting color down the middle of the cookie.
  3. Run the toothpick through the squiggle: draw the toothpick across the squiggle, pulling the toothpick through each line of the squiggle.
  4. Run the toothpick in the opposite direction: next, draw the toothpick through the squiggle in the opposite direction.
  5. Continue running the toothpick back and forth: continue drawing the toothpick through the lines of the squiggle, back and forth, until you reach the bottom of the squiggle. You can play with spacing the lines further apart or closer together for different marbling effects.
  6. Let the cookie dry: let the cookie dry undisturbed for at least 24 hours.

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Decorate your Christmas Tree
Spark some joy by putting up your Christmas tree! You can bring out all your favorite ornaments or have some fun and decorate it with summer décor to fit the mood outdoors. Don’t forget to add a few of those edible treats you just baked!

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Listen to Christmas Music
While you are decorating your tree, deck the halls with some Christmas tunes. One of our favorites on repeat is Gwen Stefani’s “Here this Christmas” which was our Countdown to Christmas theme song!

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Watch Christmas Movies on Hallmark Channel
Cozy up with your four-legged friends, grab some popcorn for you and GREENIES™ treats for them, and sit back and relax with our original Christmas premiere "Crashing Through the Snow," starring Amy Acker and Warren Christie on Saturday July 10 at 9/8c.

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Make Snow at Home
It may be warm outside, but you can still have some fun with making snow. It is a great do-it-yourself project for those young and old! Check out our Christmas in July gift guide and this fun make at home snow kit!

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Read a Holiday Book
Settle in with a book from Hallmark Publishing. In “Christmas Charms,” Ashley is supposed to have the Christmas of her dreams. After four years of working at an upscale jewelry store in Manhattan, she’s finally going to get a little velvet box of her own from her boyfriend Jeremy. He’s even taking her on a romantic trip to Paris. What could go wrong? Well, everything. Learn more about the book.

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Drink Hot Chocolate
Ready for that morning walk with your favorite canine? Swap out your morning beverage for a warm travel mug filled with hot chocolate. While you enjoy your sweet treat, don’t forget to share a GREENIES™ treat with your pup!

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Start Holiday Shopping
It’s never too early to shop for your loved ones, friends and colleagues for the holidays! Start working on your list and checking out deals online and in store. If you’re looking for inspiration, check out our gift guide!

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Make a Christmas Craft
Need to get in the festive spirit at work or at home? These DIY pens will surely do the trick and will make taking notes fun!

DIY Christmas Pen
Materials

  • Plastic pens
  • Polymer clay in various colors
  • Pliers
  • Rolling pin
  • X-Acto knife
  • Small piece of glass from a picture frame
  • Toaster oven or conventional oven

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Use your pliers to remove the ink cartridge from the shell of the pen.

2. Roll out various colors of the clay out into relatively thin pancakes.

3. Layer your colorful clay pancakes and roll them into a log shape.

4. Use an X-Acto knife to slice the log into little medallions, just like slice and bake cookie dough!

5. Next, cover the pen shell with the medallions, squishing them together so there are no gaps.

6. To smooth the surface of the clay, take your glass piece and roll it back and forth on the pen. The transparency of the glass allows you to see where needs extra smoothing or gaps filled.

7. Now it’s time to bake! Check the specific brand of clay, but these are typically baked for 15-20 minutes at 275 degrees.

8. Allow the pen to cool then re-insert the ink cartridge and enjoy!

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Send a Christmas Card
Have some extra holiday cards leftover? Get out that DIY pen you just created and surprise someone with a sweet note in the mail to let them know you care about them. You will surely brighten someone’s day and get them excited for Christmas!

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Share Merry This July
Deck the Halls all month long, with everything from delicious food, fun reads, holiday activities, and celebrating with friends and family near and far. Happy Christmas in July!