Breakfast with Santa and a Hot Apple Cider Bar

hot apple cider bar

Three of the four kids are home!  My nest is almost full again.

This weekend we hosted our annual Breakfast with Santa for the neighbor families.  It is our Christmas gift to them and ourselves!  We have been blessed to have amazing neighbors.  Two of  the three families have lived here as long as we have – 18 years!

Last year I had a hot chocolate bar which was a huge success.  Of course we had to do it again but this year I took it up a few notches and add a Hot Apple Cider Bar as well!

I used my favorite spiced apple cider recipe.  It is the best.  We then added some mixins for it.  I originally saw the idea on KSL Studio 5.    That’s a Utah station.

I had a variety of syrups to add in – cinnamon, caramel, vanilla, pumpkin spice and there was peppermint for the hot chocolate.

Of course there was also whip cream and I even made a batch of cinnamon whip cream.  There was also caramel sauce to drizzle over the top just like they do at Starbucks on their hot apple caramel cider!

But I think my favorite item to add in was the ice cream.  Yes, ice cream.  We had ice cream with our breakfast.  I am a firm believer that ice cream is appropriate at every meal.  I used my preferred ice cream of choice – Haagen Daz.  We had vanilla, dulce de leche and butter pecan.  A scoop of ice cream in your hot apple cider is divine.  Top it with whip cream and a little caramel sauce and you’ve got a little piece of heaven right there in your cup.

Seeing what combinations everyone comes up with is the best part.

I think the hot cider bar was a little more popular with the adults and the hot chocolate bar with the kids.  There were lots of different kinds of marshmallows to add to the hot chocolate – peppermint, chocolate mint, regular and some holiday Peeps!

We also had crushed up holiday Oreos, sprinkles, mini chocolate chips and mini M & M’s.

There also needed to be stir sticks so we used candy canes and Pirouette cookies for that.

So fun and yummy!

Breakfast consists of buttermilk pancakes with or without blueberries,  lots and lots of little sausages, fruit and an egg dish.

The kids have fun building gingerbread houses.

And there is always a visit from Santa.

And of course Santa always brings gifts.  This year is was warm, fuzzy socks for all the girls.

See you next year Santa!

I couldn’t resist these cute Santa hat chair covers I found at the Dollar Store this year – I only wish I had bought more!

Our Breakfast with Santa lasts most of the morning and then the adults finally head home to get a few things done but the kids all hang out together.  There is about a 15 year age span among them but they all have a great time together, hanging out, laughing and playing games. We are so incredibly blest to have some amazing neighbors.   It really doesn’t get any better than this.



Leigh Anne
Hi – I’m Leigh Anne! I have been a homebased mom for 30 years since my first baby boy was born! I love working with women and helping to inspire them to achieve their goals and dreams while still maintaining motherhood and family as their number one priority. I blog about everything I enjoy – creating treats and meals in my kitchen, spending time in my garden, entertaining and party planning, reading, self improvement and tips and ideas on style and fashion.
Leigh Anne
Leigh Anne

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  1. Carmie says

    I am amazed at how much you are always doing and get done. I think you must be a perfectionist, and I love peeking in on it all. We did have a hot chocolate bar last night too, compliments of my daughter-in-law! It was beautiful, as well as delicious.

  2. says

    I love all of your ideas – especially this one. We had to postpone a party just this week where we were going to have a hot chocolate and ice cream bar. When we reschedule it, we’re adding the apple cider too! I love your idea so much that I am posting about it and linking my readers to it on my blog,

    Blessings to you this Christmas~

  3. says

    Leigh Ann, I love, love, love your neighborhood traditions! We’ve been blessed with a fantastic neighborhood as well, but I definitely want to pick up a few of your events :) We recently had our (adult only) neighborhood holiday gathering and I did a hot chocolate bar, too! For one second I thought you’d covered your table with the same wrapping paper I had, but then realized your’s is a tablecloth :)

  4. Vanessa Selph says

    First of all, adorable party you have every year! What a fun idea to do with your neighbors!

    I’m having a hot chocolate party this week! I live one block away from Peacock Lane, so I’m hosting a “come get hot chocolate and goodies” party before we all walk down Peacock Lane!

    My problem is that I’m making actual making of the hot chocolate much too difficult! Do you have a recipe that you love for Hot Chocolate? Thanks so much!

  5. Emily says

    I love your apple cider recipe and crave it all year long! I’ll have to try the toppings as well. Maybe one day we can be neighbors, that would be wonderful!

  6. Cindy says

    Leigh Anne,
    I’ve been waiting for this post!!! I’m with everyone who wrote above-I want to be your neighbor!!! You are always doing so many fun things! The memories you give all of these kids will be with them all of their lives! A true gift you have!!!
    Wishing you and your family all the blessing of Christmas and the best ever New Year!!!
    Many thanks for all of the fun!!!

  7. Erin says

    I know you posted this a few years ago, but how much of the syrups did you suggest people add to their cider? I love your idea and am hoping to post a few suggested recipes to my bar. Thanks!!

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