‘Tis the Season – Holiday Series Part Three – Hot Chocolate Recipe


Hi everyone! Grace here!



Can you believe that there is less than a week until Christmas?

Today we are doing part three of our Christmas post series. Here is the schedule:

     Part One, Wednesday, December 13Caroline, Collection Post {Check!}

     Part Two, Saturday, December 16 : Clara, Craft Post {Check!}

     Part Three, Tuesday, December 19: Grace, Recipe Post

     Part Four, Friday, December 22: Julie, Photostory Post


Wow! We’re nearing the end of the series! It’s been a lot of fun for us, and I hope for you, too!

As you probably know, I love baking. So today, I have a recipe to show you for some easy hot chocolate! (Without hot chocolate mix 😉 , so if you don’t have any on hand, this recipe is for you!)

Easy Homemade Hot Chocolate.png

Let’s begin!

You will need…



  • About 2 Tablespoons of Chocolate chips (or chopped up chocolate)
  • About a cup of milk (Almond milk works too!)
  • Optional: Sugar
  • Optional topping ideas: Marshmallows, Whipped cream, crushed candy cane

Note: You don’t need to measure the milk exactly, and the chocolate can be approximate, too.


First, pour the milk into your mug.


Then stick it in the microwave and heat it up for one minute.


Put your two tablespoons of chocolate chips into your mug. Be careful, sometimes the milk splatters when you drop them in.


Now stir it all up until your chocolate chips are melted into the milk!


And you have your hot chocolate! Yum! A few notes: 1) There may be some little chocolate bits still floating around that don’t dissolve; 2) I like to microwave the hot chocolate another 30 seconds to try and get the chocolate to melt further; 3) You may add in some sugar if you want it sweeter.


Also feel free to add toppings! I chose whipped cream and crushed candy cane!


And that’s it! I hope you enjoy!!


Here is Gracie’s hot chocolate–the human-sized version of this recipe! 🙂




Thank you for reading! I hope you enjoy the recipe, and be sure to come back later for Julie’s post–the last post of the series!!

What is one of your favorite Christmas recipes? Are you going to try this hot chocolate?



P.S. Here is the link to the original recipe I based this one off of.

P.P.S. AG mugs are not microwave safe. 😉


Cheery Consuelo – A Photoshoot

Good day!

Today I have the photoshoot that I had mentioned getting of Consuelo to show you!

She’s such a pretty doll, and it’s fun to play around with photographing her. H4H doll’s heads actually have a little wider range of motion than AG (their heads can move upward a bit), which adds some different posing options.

Please enjoy!


I made the dress, shoes, and headband that she is wearing, all no-sew. The headband is made with some sheer ribbon, braided and tied around her head, the dress is sort of a half-circle of fabric with openings for her arms and head cut out, and the shoes are made with denim fabric, hot-glued onto craft foam soles.


















I hope you enjoyed!

Which picture was your favorite? Can you believe that Christmas is just around the corner?

I hope to do a Christmas-y post soon!

Also, Smile and Craft AG is nearly at 200 followers!! But… I don’t know what to do in celebration. Any ideas?

Have a blessed day!

Gracie Sign Off

P.S. Thoughts on the new sign off?

Questions and Fun Facts – Get to Know the Dolls + BIBPC

Today I have kind of a different type of post!

How would you like to get to know the Thomas family better?

Get to Know the Dolls featureimage

Here’s how this works…

-I will ask questions, and each of my dolls will give an answer. I will name fun facts about the dolls, too! 

-During the post, I will include a few pictures of the dolls that I have taken in the past, and never displayed on this blog before. I’ll include a little description about the story behind the picture, too! 

-Then, at the end of the post, you get to participate and ask the dolls some questions yourself, or have your own dolls answer!


I thought that it would be fun to do a kind of Q&A for my dolls, and thus show you some more about their personalities and character!

Let’s begin!




Do you prefer wearing Skirts or Pants?

Clara: Skirts!!!

Grace: I guess it depends the occasion…. But if I have to pick one, then… pants?

Caroline: I like skirts, but I am partial to longer ones. Otherwise I’d rather pants.

Julie: I prefer pants. Dresses are nice, but pants are more practical.


Coffee or Tea?

Clara: Neither, please! I’d much rather have chocolate milk or juice!

Grace: Coffee… if Julie would let me… 😉

Caroline: Tea is my favorite!

Julie: Coffee.

Are you more Tomboyish or Girly?

Clara: I think I’m kind of neither. I love being active, and I’m not very into fashion and things, but I do love pink… not to mention skirts!

Grace: Probably leaning towards girly.

Caroline: I’m with Grace on this one.

Julie: Tomboy, but even more so when I was a bit younger. I’m not as much anymore.


This is a picture I got when I first took Grace home from the AG store! And, um, don’t mind the foot in the background… XD 


Which, of your sisters, would you say is your Best Friend in the family?

Clara: Grace! I enjoy playing with her, and we hang out a lot. She’s also the closest to me in age!

Grace: Clara and I spend a lot of time together, not to mention that we share a room, so we’re pretty close. However, I do really love it when I get to spend time with Julie and Caroline.

Caroline: I’m closest to Julie in the family. I feel like I can just talk to her about things on my mind, and I greatly appreciate the heartfelt conversations that we have, often discussing biblical things.

Julie: I would consider Caroline my best friend in the family, but I also really enjoy spending time with Grace. Grace and I enjoy shopping together sometimes, or cooking and baking in the kitchen together.


Are you more Introverted or Extroverted?

Clara: People would guess I’m an extrovert, which is probably correct. I can be a little shy at first, but I warm up quickly, and then I’m outgoing!

Grace: I’m more extroverted. I like meeting someone new, and enjoy being around people a lot.

Caroline: Introverted. I enjoy having alone time and family time.

Julie: I’m an introvert, but I’m willing to step out and introduce myself to someone new, especially in a place that I’m familiar with, so you might not be able to tell that I’m introverted.


Indoors or Outdoors?

Clara: Outdoors!

Grace: Both, but I’m leaning towards outdoors.

Caroline: I prefer the outdoors. Not so much for sports and things, but for enjoying God’s beautiful nature. I enjoy gardening, as well as reading outside.

Julie: I prefer indoors.


I got this picture after I had built my AG-sized bars and beam! (I built the bars with these instructions!) These have been featured in Clara’s past gymnastics posts


Favorite and Least Favorite subjects?

Clara: My favorite subject is art! My least favorite is math; it is definitely not my strong point!

Grace: I like reading and writing pretty well. Music is good, too. My least favorite subject is Grammar! Thankfully, Clara and I help each other out with our worst subjects.

Caroline: My favorite subject is history. I’m not sure I really have a least favorite, but I guess I don’t care for science too much.

Julie: My favorite subject is Math! My least favorite is probably writing, though.


Name one thing you Appreciate or Admire about one of your sisters.

Each doll will take one of their sisters. 🙂

Clara: I like that Grace takes the time to play with me. She is really friendly and outgoing. We do get in fights and arguments sometimes, but we’re also close and have fun together. I also really appreciate that we can help each other with our homework. 🙂

Grace: I admire Caroline’s quiet and caring personality. She is very thoughtful and discerning. You might not expect it, but she can really step out and be courageous when she needs to be.

Caroline: I really like how Julie takes on responsibility in our home. She isn’t perfect, and isn’t always right, but she tries to do what’s best. She is like the mother-figure in our family, and I can see that the younger girls respect her.

Julie: I love all the fun that Clara brings into our family. She’s a very active girl who just loves to have fun. She keeps us laughing. Even though sometimes she can get out of hand… 😉


This picture isn’t very good, quality wise 🙂 , but I think it’s pretty sweet :-). The dolls are having a movie night, popcorn and all! It looks like they’re watching off of Grace’s iPad. Oh and look! There’s my knee! XD 



Fun Facts


  • None of the dolls have a nickname! 😮


  • When I bought Clara (online) I had expected her to look pretty different. I think that this is because, at the time, I didn’t know that there were various face molds, so I probably expected her to have the Josefina mold, like Julie! It took me a while to get used to!


  • I received Julie as my first doll. Next I got Clara, then Grace, and finally, Caroline is my newest.



This is a picture of Grace dressed up as Julie! I took this picture for American Girl Fan’s 2015 Doll Costume Photo Contest!


Your Turn!

Now it’s time for your part of this post!

Comment down below with questions to get to know my dolls, whether about their hobbies, personality, favorites or just about anything! You can ask a specific doll a question, or all of them! And then they can reply and answer your questions in the comments!

Please limit to about 3 questions 🙂 .

Also feel free to share fun facts about your doll(s), or have your dolls answer some of the questions that my dolls did! (Or you can answer them yourself, if you like!)


Do you have any fun facts about your dolls? Which fun fact or story behind a picture did you enjoy most? Do you have any questions for my dolls? 




Here is my BIBPC (Boring into Beautiful Photography Contest, hosted by Megan!) entry!

I am on team Kiwi, and the category is Celebration!


Story: I was looking through birthday photos and other celebration photos, and eventually pulled up this one that I got last Christmas. I really like how it turned out, and since Christmas is a celebration of Christ, and the decorations represent that, it fits the category!


Family Game Night Olympics


I’ve finished putting together the photostory!

I hope you will enjoy…

AG Family Game Night Feature Picture


Here we go!



Julie walked into the room where her sisters had just sat down to eat dinner.

“Girls,” Julie said, “I have something I’d like to say before we start!”

The girls turned to look at her, and Clara mumbled something about being hungry.


“Tonight we are going to have a family game night!”


“Sounds nice,” Caroline replied softly and cheerily. “It’s been a while.”


“But Julie!” Grace countered. “I was going to hangout at Therese’s house tonight!”

Julie shook her head, “Sorry, but this is non-negotiable. We need some family time!”

“Oh alright; I’ll text her, then…” Grace said (with a tinge of a sigh).

“What do you think of it, Clara?” Julie asked.


“Well,” Clara said thoughtfully, “My stuffed animals were going to have the Grand Stuffielympics after dinner, but I guess a game night sounds like fun; the Olympics will just have to wait!”


Julie smiled, “It’s settled then! After dinner, we’ll have our game night!”

Then Julie prayed over the food, and the girls ate.



Once they finished eating, they all worked to clear the table, and Julie told them meet in the living room afterwards.


Soon they had taken their seats and gathered around the coffee table.


“Grace, will you bring out the games for us?” Julie requested.

Grace readily agreed, and headed out to get the games.

DSCN3128 She came out with an unstable looking armful of games.

“Oh my!” Julie said, standing up. “Do you need help?”

“Neh, eh got et.” Grace murmured under the cards that were balancing against her face. But when she leaned over to put the games on the table…


they all came tumbling down!


“Oh no! I guess I did need help after all!” Grace exclaimed. Julie giggled and helped her put the games back in order, while Caroline and Clara gathered cards from the floor.


“So,” Grace gasped, after plopping back down onto the couch. “What game should we play?”


“Why not all of them?” Clara said suddenly.

“Like a family game night marathon,” Caroline commented.

“Yes, but I was thinking a bit more on the lines of a family game night Olympics!”

The sisters all nodded their agreement, and they began the first game of the night’s ‘Olympic Games’, “Racing.”


The girls rolled dice and their playing pieces took off down the colored board. Julie (Yellow) was taking the lead, followed closely by Clara (Red), and further by Grace (Green). Caroline’s blue pawn lingered behind them all.


The game started a bit mellow, but soon the sisters were really getting into it!

Clara: Caroline!! How did you pass me so quickly!

Caroline: *giggles and shrugs*

Grace: This roll oughtta pull me ahead! *shakes dice vigorously*

(It did pull her ahead! 😉 )


After the game finished, Julie drew a scoreboard to keep track of the night’s Olympic games scores.

The scores for “Racing” were as follows:


Julie: (4th); Caroline: 1st; Grace: 3rd; Clara: 2nd

Next up, Snakes and Ladders (Also played as Shoots and Ladders)


Clara (red) took a quick lead, but then Julie (yellow) happened upon a ladder!



Soon the playing pieces were nearing the end! Poor Grace (green) was at the back of the line-up.


Clara (who was currently in the lead as the red piece) was on her turn to roll when…


she rolled a two which sent her straight down the worst snake (shoot) on the board!


“NOOO!” she exclaimed (falling to the floor dramatically). Julie tried to stifle a giggle.

“Now I’m SO far behind!!” she wailed.

“Don’t worry,” Julie said brightly, “you may catch up quickly! Besides, it’s all about the fun and the family time, right?”

“Yes, you’re right,” Clara agreed, sitting up to continue playing.

And she did, indeed, catch up quickly!

Until she fell down that same snake.



And the game continued on, and Grace, with a quick recovery from her losing start, finished first! The other girls soon followed.

Julie recorded the scores for Snakes and Ladders:


Julie: 2nd; Caroline: 3rd; Grace: 1st; Clara: (4th)


Next was Chinese Checkers! But after a few long minutes of tediously setting up several of the many little game pieces, they realized that it was only a three player game. So they put it away and crossed it off of Julie’s chart.


By this time the girls were getting a bit worn out.

“I think we need some popcorn!” Julie offered.


The girls brightened.

“Oh, yes!” Clara exclaimed.

“I’ll come with you!” Grace said as Julie stood up to go get the popcorn. Only Julie noticed Grace wink.

Soon Julie brought in a large bowl of popcorn,


and Grace followed behind with a plate of chocolate chip cookies! Clara whooped.

“I made them a earlier today,” Grace explained, laying them on the coffee table.


After several cookies and handfuls of popcorn were devoured, the sisters were ready to continue their games. Caroline dealt out the UNO cards.


The girls took turns in silence. (Due to them still eating, of course)


“Yikes, Grace! How many cards do you have?” Clara said, after finishing her second cookie. (Julie told her she’d had enough when she tried to nab a third.)

“Well, a lot,” Grace grimaced at her handful.


Suddenly, Caroline called “UNO!”


“Uno?” Grace called, surprised by Caroline’s sudden cry. “I still have eight!”

Caroline won on her next turn, and the game continued around. Grace, who seemed to be very good at comebacks by now, finished soon after Caroline.

Julie wrote out the scores…


Julie: (4th); Caroline: 1st; Grace: 2nd; Clara: 3rd


Next up, Caroline dealt out cards for Go Fish, while Clara tried to get her attention to insist that they need a Go Fish “pool” rather than a Go Fish “pile.”

“How can we ‘go fishing’ if all the cards are stacked up neatly?” Clara reasoned. “They have to be in a lake so we can fish for them!”


And so, Caroline set up a Go Fish “pool” in the center of the table!


The game began, and continued around.


Several matches and “go fish’s” had been made when Julie stood up, suddenly.

“Wait a minute,” she said, “I’ve got something to get.” (Clara wondered [or should I say hoped] if it was more cookies)


Julie strutted back into the room, holding her camera, and announced, “It’s picture time!!”

DSCN3224 “Ready or not, here I shoot!”




“NOOOO!” Clara cried.

“Just give me a minute, my hair is a wreck!” Caroline pleaded.

Grace just giggled.



Grace managed to convince her sisters to come over and pose, after reminding them that Julie was still taking pictures of them.

They piled in, and actually looked fine, in spite of their original distress.



Julie attached her camera to her tripod, set the timer, and jumped in to join them in a picture.



Then Julie decided that was enough photos, and set her camera on the table. That is, after viewing the ones she had taken and giggling over the results. Clara and Caroline hesitantly agreed that Julie could keep the crazy pictures, and laughed along with her.

Then they sat down to finish their round of Go Fish.

The scores were as follows:


Julie: 1st; Caroline: 2nd; Grace: (4th); Clara: 3rd


The last game of the night was “Slap” (also known as Egyptian Rat Screw, and I think other names, too.)

It got quite intense, as the girls crowded around the table, trying to prepare themselves to slap the deck at a moment’s notice!

These were the ending scores for “Slap”:


Julie: 3rd; Caroline: 2nd; Grace: 1st; Clara: (4th)


“That’s the last game!” Julie told them.

“What!?” Grace exclaimed. The girls began to discuss how fun the night had been as Julie added up the final scores.

She finished, and looked up at her sisters, smiling.

“Ready to see our Family Game Night Olympian Winner!?”

“Yes!” they exclaimed in Unison.

And the winner is……





With Grace in 2nd and Julie in 3rd!


“Oh my goodness!” Caroline said excitedly.

Clara frowned as she noticed her own score, but quickly caught herself and was the first to get up and congratulate Caroline.


“Congratulations, Caroline!!” Julie said after her sisters had a chance to see the scoreboard.

“Yes, Great job!!” Grace agreed enthusiastically. They were happy that their quiet, humble sister, Caroline, won the whole tournament!


“Honestly,” Clara said, “This was a lot of fun! Winning or not, it was better than my Stuffielympics would have been!”


“And though Therese’s house would have been great, it was good to get some family time in,” Grace added.

Julie gave a mischievous grin, “Aw, this is great! Just lovely! It’s the perfect time for another group picture!”

Nooo!!” The girls chorused.

“Don’t worry! I’m kidding!” Julie said, her eyes twinkling.

They all laughed.


What did you think? It was fun to put together! 🙂

Did you recognize Therese’s name from Grace’s school day photostory?

Have you ever played any of the games featured in this photostory? Does your family ever have family game nights?



Lost – Part 6 – The FINALE!

This is it! The very last part!


Complimentary refreshments: Part one, two, three, four, five

And in case you just need a quick reminder, we ended the last episode as follows:



“You know,” I said, “what I really would like, is just to go home.”

“Then home you will have!” she responded gleefully. “I will take you to the top of the cliff you fell from, and I imagine you can take it from there?”

Home! At last!



Clara’s Point of View


Grace had been gone for two full days, and we were all distraught. The police were on the case, and we prayed earnestly that she was safe.

There seemed to be no other explanation, except that she was kidnapped, which we desperately prayed was not the case.

Everything seemed to be lost. Grace. Kaity. Our hopes.


There seemed to be nothing else to do. We could search for her, but we had gathered a whole search party the other day, with no luck. So we gathered in the field where I had played frisbee with her before she disappeared, and prayed long and hard.

Our prayer was interrupted by a bark. A dog bark.

We instinctively looked toward the direction of the sound.


Grace!? Could it be??! For there she was, standing off a distance, with Kaity beside her!

“Grace!” I managed to shout, and took off in a mad dash for my sister, Julie and Caroline following close behind.


I was the first to reach her, and I threw my arms around her in a bear hug, not sure that I would ever be able to let go. She was home! Dirty and scraped up, but home!


We smothered her with hugs, while a happy Kaity barked and jumped around us.


“What happened, Grace? How did you get lost?” Caroline asked, after we had settled down a little.


“It is a long story. I’ll tell you later. But now, I just need a hot shower and something to eat.” She sounded tired, but not frightened. Almost excited. I wanted to beg her story out of her, but I refrained. I would have to wait to hear it, but for now, I relished in the joy of her (and Kaity’s!) homecoming!

And with that, we led her home, bursting with thankfulness.

🙂 🙂 🙂

What did you think of this photostory? Did you like the ending?