Tag Archives: christmas

Santa Didn’t Stop By Our House This Christmas

So, I am going to be completely transparent with you all today. I know that what I am about to say may make some people question my parenting and whether or not I am a good mother. However, I could honestly care less about those people right now. Most of my readers already understand and know who I am and what my children mean to me and how serious I take my role as a mother and role model. Either way, I do say this with great sadness but also with a peace that I did the right thing.

Before we get started, I want to pose a couple of questions to you. Feel free to answer in the comments section below or just within your own heart and mind as you read. Have you ever had to teach your children a lesson that you knew would hurt them? Did that lesson ultimately end up hurting you probably just as much, if not more, than it hurt your kids?

Yep, now you see how serious this is…

no-christmas-allowedI made the decision to cancel Christmas for my children this year. By that, I mean they did not receive any presents on Christmas morning. Now, I am not one who gets particularly bent on a day because I feel like I can buy presents all year round and any day of the year can be “Christmas” however, this day is, and always has been, a BIG day for my children (and most children, and
people, if we’re totally honest about it).

I did not withhold gifts due to poor grades because my children have been doing exceptionally well when it comes to their academics. I canceled Christmas for a couple of reasons. One of those reasons being that I have CHRISTmas
been trying to help my children understand the true meaning of Christmas and why we celebrate it in the first place. I want them to know and forever understand that Jesus truly is the one and ONLY reason for this season, and every season.

The second reason was because I have gotten to my wits end in continuing to have to remind my children to do their chores, to the point that I am even doing many of their chores for them, and I wanted to help them understand that EVERYONE
contributes in a family. Also that everyone has a role and kinopoisk.ruresponsibilities within our household and that when we don’t do our “job” things just don’t function as well as they could or should. There have been other behavior issues with a couple of the kids but this is the bulk of why I chose to not have presents wrapped and under the tree on Christmas morning.

I wrestled with the idea of withholding gifts for quite a while. I had actually gone out and purchased presents for each of my children, multiple presents mind you, but at the very last minute I decided that some of their behavioral issues needed to be addressed and dealt with a little differently this year. I also did this because my children are far from jesus-vs-santa babies but they are not yet teenagers so, my thinking was that if I don’t teach them now, and begin to hold them accountable for their actions, they will never truly learn and adhere to it later.

All was not lost for our Christmas. We celebrated Jesus, ate ice cream, listened to holiday music, sang to various songs, my two older girls recorded their Christmas Day YouTube vlogs and we watched an outrageous amount of classic Christmas movies. We also made our feast of a Christmas meal that we have done every year since the children were all very young. I think they may have enjoyed Christmas a little more this year, even without the gifts, but Christmas-giftsmaybe that’s just the mom in me being hopeful that they actually “got it!” but who knows.

My original plan was to have a late “gift exchange” this year but I am still debating that. I am always trying to make sure that I am sending the right message to my children and I don’t know if giving them their gifts, after-the-fact, is sending them mixed messages. Y’all pray for me! 🙂

I hope everyone had a glorious Christmas and I will be chatting with you again in the New Year! Happy Holidays to you all!

A Holiday Favorite

maccheese

What’s a holiday feast without macaroni and cheese? I mean, c’mon… Who doesn’t like mac & cheese, right??? It is almost always mentioned by any child that I have come into contact with as being their favorite food. And I don’t know about you but I happen to love this dish as well. You are sure to be in heaven once you taste this delightful creation. Be sure to save some for your guests! 🙂

Oven-Baked Macaroni and Cheese

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
  • 4 tablespoons whole milk
  • 4 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1/3 lb shredded sharp Cheddar Cheese ***
  • 1/3 lb shredded Colby Jack ***
  • 1/2 lb Velveeta, cubed ***
  • 1/3 lb shredded mild Cheddar Cheese (for topping) ***
  • 1/3 cup Sour Cream
  • 3 eggs, beaten

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Add 6 cups of water to  a large pot and bring to a boil. Add 1 tablespoon of salt to the water; for flavoring of the macaroni. Add macaroni noodles to boiling water and cook until soft; about 15-20 minutes. Drain in strainer and run cold water over noodles for a few minutes to bring the temperature down.

Generously grease casserole/baking dish with butter or cooking spray. Combine evaporated milk, eggs and sour cream in a mixing bowl and whisk thoroughly. Add cooked macaroni to casserole/baking dish. Stir in evaporated milk, egg and sour cream mixture. Mix thoroughly. Add butter, white and black pepper, Velveeta cubes, sharp and Colby jack cheese. Mix well while adding whole milk. Pack down mixture into casserole dish and top with mild cheddar cheese. Bake for 25 minutes or until cheese is melted and light brown.

*** If you like your mac & cheese very cheesy you can always add more cheese. Also, you can change the cheese listed here to fit your family’s liking. I have a habit of adding things like: Gouda, Mozzarella and bacon or finely chopped walnuts and breadcrumbs, as well as many other ingredients, to my mac & cheese to give it a different taste or a new “look”; so feel free to make this your own. Cooking can be fun when you let yourself go and try out different things that you may like.

As always Happy Cooking!

How To Make: Cornbread Dressing

CornbreadDressing

*** Thanks for your patience! I have been dealing with some technical difficulties all night which is why this is coming so late. Sorry! 😦 ***

We are in the holiday season everyone! This is hands down, my favorite time of the year. Okay, okay, I could do without the bad weather and some of the family drama but other than that I absolutely love how magical this season is. Everyone seems to become nice all of a sudden and those frowns are turned upside down. Most of us have no problem getting into the spirit of the season. It is absolutely miraculous!

With the holiday season approaching, I figured I would do more of a holiday theme in the coming weeks on holiday food favorites. So whether you’re looking to make a turkey for the first time or needing some fresh ideas on side dishes to accompany Mr. Turkey, I’ve got you covered. As always, you can refine the recipes here to fit your family’s liking (just try it my way at some point and let me know what you think of it – and please be honest, I’m a big girl, I promise I won’t get mad if you happen to think it’s the worst thing you’ve ever tasted. Not to toot my own horn but I am about 99% certain that will not be the case.).

Today, I am introducing you to one of my favorite side dishes and “comfort foods” during the holiday season…Cornbread Dressing! This dish is sure to get your family and friends talking around the dinner table.

Cornbread Dressing

Ingredients

Dressing:
Cornbread, recipe follows
5 cups Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing Mix
1 1/4 cup butter, divided
3 cups celery, chopped
1 large onion, diced
7 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh sage (or dried rubbed sage)
1 tablespoon poultry seasoning (optional)
6 eggs, beaten

Cornbread:
3 cups white cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour (use self-rising flour to cut the need for bp/bs)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 cup buttermilk
2 eggs, beaten
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons salt

*** You can also just make the Jiffy Mix cornbread and follow the directions on the box. If you decide to go this route, be sure to make at least 2 pans of cornbread to ensure you will have more than enough already made when it’s time to combining everything. *** 

Directions

Cornbread:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients first. Slowly stir in the liquid ingredients. Make sure all ingredients are mixed well. Pour batter into a greased baking pan. Bake for approximately 20 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.

Dressing:

Turn preheated oven down to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large bowl, combine crumbled cornbread and Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing Mix; set aside.

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chopped celery and diced onion and cook until transparent, approximately 5 to 10 minutes. Add about a cup of the Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing Mix; cook with the vegetables for about 5 minutes. Pour the vegetable mixture over the cornbread mixture. Add the chicken broth, mix well, taste. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add the sage, poultry seasoning and 1/2 cup of melted butter. Finally, add beaten eggs and mix well.

Pour mixture into a well-greased pan and bake until dressing is cooked through, about 40 minutes. The top of the dressing should be somewhat hardened when it is finished cooking but the middle and bottom with still be soft and moist. Serve warm, with turkey, as a side dish.