Christmas Eve 2016

This Saturday evening will be year four of Hailey’s annual Christmas Eve gift! She may not believe in Santa anymore, but the anticipation she does still have for the holiday keeps that special magic kids bring to Christmas alive. Her gifts also still say ‘from Santa’ anyway! My Mom did this for my brother and me; it still makes it fun and puts a smile on your face when opening gifts. Hailey started her Christmas countdown with around 65 days to go so as you can imagine she is getting giddy with excitement as we head into the last few days of the countdown! Each year she is allowed to open her Christmas Eve gift after 7:00 PM that evening. It will always include Continue reading

Gingerbread Cut Out Cookies

The Christmas season is in full swing; my husband and I braved Black Friday shopping (late in the afternoon, of course), the house is decorated and we had the annual cookie baking day at my Grandma’s this past weekend. Despite the cold weather, it truly is one of my favorite times of year. To make it even better, Hailey seems to be  extra excited for Christmas this year! I don’t remember her looking forward to the holiday this much since Continue reading

Roasted Cranberry and Brie Crostini

You know what makes it challenging to focus and write? A puppy who has loads of energy at 8:30 PM sprinting in circles around the living room and up and down the couch you’re “relaxing” on! I’m talking about our little Max of course, the cute puppy who made his blogging debut in my Canning Homemade Salsa post. He’s already doubled in size weighing in at a whopping 6.5 pounds these days! The good news? Puppies play hard and then sleep hard so although it may have taken me twice as long to write 100 words tonight he is now snuggled on the couch ready to nap! And on that note, let’s talk about cranberries and my excitement to have them back in season! I wish I could make the cranberry season last longer, but I have gotten wiser this year thanks to my Grandma and will be Continue reading

Taco Stuffed Peppers

For a festive Halloween dinner this year, I decided to take my amateur carving skills to vegetables and make taco stuffed peppers. The jack o lantern faces get a bit droopy after baking, but I suppose it adds to the character of the final product! These are definitely going on our regular menu, jack o lantern faces omitted, because they were delicious! A tip for making these over the top good? Use  Continue reading

Lollipop Ghosts

Happy Halloween (yesterday)!! I hope everyone had a spooky fun holiday and got to enjoy a little sugar without the guilt! My initial goal for these lollipop ghosts was to have them completed by October 30th; that would have been nicer than making them an hour before trick or treat on October 31st while cooking a festive dinner simultaneously, but such is life in a busy home! To accomplish the ghost assembly task under our new timeline, I had to Continue reading

Dark Chocolate Halloween Cookies

A few days ago I shared last year’s healthy Halloween treat (jack o lantern oranges) on Facebook making the comment we should save the sugar for the Christmas cookies. I’ll have to request you look past that comment as I now write about the Halloween cookies we made yesterday that are clearly filled with that exact ingredient. In my defense, my thirteen year old stepdaughter Continue reading

Southwest Chicken Tortilla Pinwheels

We’ve been blessed with many good cooks in our family which means family gatherings of any sort are not events you leave feeling hungry. Let’s take the most recent example for instance; we visited my grandparents’ house to can salsa and for lunch had homemade vegetable soup, crackers, our pick between five lunch meats and various toppings to make sandwiches and homemade apple pie. That’s in addition to the Continue reading

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