Tag Archives: christmas in full bloom

Time for Something Sweet! Check out Denise Wheatley’s Favorite Sugar Cookie Recipe!

Delicious recipes straight from the kitchens of your favorite Tule authors.

Happy holidays! My name is Denise N. Wheatley, and I am here to share with you one of my favorite dessert recipes—Denise’s Darling Christmas Sugar Cookies. But before I do that, here’s a bit about me:

I love the art of storytelling and happily ever afters, and published my first romance novel in 2004. Since then I have written (and ghostwritten) over twenty books. I signed with Tule Publishing in 2019 and wrote A Fearless Fairytale series, along with two holiday novels, Christmas in Full Bloom and Love at the Icicle Café

The Christmas season is by far my favorite time of the year as I love spending it with family. We gather together to share fond memories while preparing delicious recipes. For me, that’s my beloved sugar cookies. 

My joy of baking inspired Love at the Icicle Café. The book centers around a cozy café known for its savory dishes and delicious desserts. I grew up with a mother who also loved to bake, so writing a story filled with vivid descriptions of yummy treats was an absolute pleasure.

Denise’s Darling Buttercream Frosted Lemon Sugar Cookies

Today I’ll be sharing details on how to prepare these buttercream frosted lemon sugar cookies, topped with red and green sparkling sugar. For this recipe, you’ll need:


  • 1 cup of unsalted butter, room temperature 
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of lemon extract
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon zest
  • 3 cups of flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • Sparkling red and green sugar

How to prepare:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar for 4 minutes until light and fluffy. Add eggs, vanilla, lemon extract, and lemon zest. Stir to combine.
  3. Stir in flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix just until combined.
  4. Chill the dough in the refrigerator for at least an hour
  5. Roll the dough to 1/4 inch thick, cut with holiday-shaped cookie cutters
  6. Place parchment paper on a cookie sheet, then place cookies on top
  7. Bake for 9-11 minutes or until edges are lightly browned

While the cookies are baking, prepare the frosting. Below are the ingredients and instructions:

  • 2 cups of confectionery sugar
  • 1/2 stick of salted butter, room temperature 
  • 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons of milk
  1. Mix the ingredients together with a beater until light and fluffy 
  2. Ready to use!

Once your cookies have cooled, ice them, sprinkle the sugar on top, and enjoy!

– Denise

I do hope that you’ll try this recipe during the holiday season and enjoy spending time with your loved ones. If you would like to stay connected with me, here’s how:

Tule Publishing Author Page  |  TikTok  |  Facebook  |  Instagram  |  Twitter  |  My Blog

Tule Author Q&A: Denise N. Wheatley’s mom inspired her story!

Denise N. Wheatley topped by the Tule blog to discuss her new Christmas book, Christmas in Full Bloom!


Selective Focus Photography of Pink and Red FlowersWhere did you get the inspiration for Christmas in Full Bloom?

I have to give my mother the credit for inspiring Christmas in Full Bloom. Christmas is my family’s favorite time of the year, and the holiday season has always been a big deal around our house. So writing holiday stories that celebrate the season is such a pleasure. Also, like my book’s heroine, my mother is a floral designer. Incorporating her love of flowers into the book brought back wonderful memories of my mom’s beautiful designs. 


How do you relate to Lauren, your heroine, and how do you hope readers will relate to her? How do you relate to Mel?

I relate to Lauren in that we’re both go-getters. Like me, she wasn’t afraid to step out and pursue her dreams. One thing I admire about her character that I wasn’t able to do was move away from my hometown to pursue my career. I grew up in Chicago and always dreamed of living in LA. But I’m such a mama’s girl that I never made that happen! Maybe one of these days…

As for Mel, I can relate to his character because he is so loyal to his family. Mel is a doctor, and his father owns a medical clinic in their hometown of Maple Valley, Michigan. Rather than move away and work for a big fancy hospital, Mel chose to stay in Maple Valley and work alongside his father. Sticking close to home and putting family first is something I’ve personally experienced.

I hope that readers can relate to my characters’ desire to find fulfillment in life, all while pursuing their dreams and balancing their careers.


Christmas in Full Bloom is a sweet second chance romance. What drew you to this trope? What’s your favorite trope to write?

I am a big believer in second chances, and love the idea of revisiting old potential flames in hopes that the second time around will be the charm. In both of my holiday novels, Love at the Icicle Café and Christmas in Full Bloom, my heroines have second chance encounters with heroes in which they share some sort of past. Exploring the possibility of a relationship with someone familiar is so exciting to me, both in fiction and in real life, which is why this trope is one of my favorites.


Do you have any favorite Christmas or holiday traditions?

I have a couple of wonderful Christmas memories/traditions from childhood that we still practice today. One is opening a gift on Christmas Eve. That is always a lot of fun. Another is trimming the tree together as a family. As a child, my father did the heavy lifting while my mother did the majority of the trimming. Now that I’m an adult, I do most of the work while Mom sits back and bosses me around!


What are you currently reading?

I am currently reading Just a Little Married by Reese Ryan. It’s about a woman who needs to find a husband immediately in order to claim an inheritance. She turns to a former flame and makes him an offer that he can’t refuse. Once they reconnect, they realize that the love between them never died. I am loving the book so far!


About the Author

Denise N. Wheatley is a lover of happily-ever-afters and the art of storytelling. She has written (and ghostwritten) numerous novels and novellas that run the romance gamut, from contemporary to paranormal, sweet to steamy. Denise strives to pen entertaining stories that embody matters of the heart, while creating characters who are strong, colorful and relatable.

She is an RWA member and received a B.A. in English from the University of Illinois at Chicago, the city where she was born and raised. When Denise is not sitting behind a computer, you can find her in a movie theater, on a tennis court, watching true crime television or chatting on social media.