David's Garden Seeds®


Christmas Treats

When I was a little girl, December meant delicious Christmas treats from my grandmothers, like Tollhouse cookies, sugar cookies, fudge, divinity, and penuche.

A Christmas wreath made by my sister-in-law, Reba.A Christmas wreath made by my sister-in-law, Reba.

We would go across the street and help Nan make sugar cookies. We would help her roll the dough and cut it out. Then she would bake them and we would frost and decorate them. So much fun!

She, my father's mother, would make us delicious fabulous Christmas treats like Tollhouse cookies, M&M cookies, Rice Krispy treats, and chocolate fudge.

My other grandmother, Gran, would bring us delicious Christmas treats like chocolate fudge, penuche, and divinity. She would also make molasses cookies aka ginger snaps. She would also make homemade coffee cake, cinnamon rolls and the most delicious homemade cakes and frostings. I have made a lot of these Christmas treats in December for many years before I was a mom and during the time the kids were growing up. Smelling and tasting those treats every year really takes me back to the wonderful days of being a little girl. I love to bake so I thought I would share a few delicious recipes from my childhood.

Because it is the Christmas season, I am going to release these recipes earlier than the week of December 19 through December 25, 2022 like the dates say. That way, if you want to try some of the recipes, you can do so earlier in the month.

Remember, there are many recipes online, in magazines, and in cookbooks for these treats. You may find one you like better. These are the recipes I use and have for many years. Happy baking!

Christmas Treats - 12/19-12/25/2022

Monday, December 19, 2022 - Christmas Treats

Another shot of the hens enjoying their Christmas treats, fresh lettuce and greens grown in the grow tower in our Farm Store.Another shot of the hens enjoying their Christmas treats, fresh lettuce and greens grown in the grow tower in our Farm Store.

Good, chilly, wet Monday before Christmas! I just put up my chicken tortilla soup recipe so if you need a great dinner idea for this cold day, feel free to make it tonight!

I woke up to cold and rain so it has been a not so fun morning, trying to get everyone fed and happy.

To start it off, David had asked four people to come and help us on this very busy Monday. Three were definitely coming. So this morning, all four said no. To top it off, one of our own team members called in to take his child in for illness. Why not do that on the weekend? Mondays are the busiest days we have. I spent Saturday pulling and filling and mailing orders. Good thing I did because there are so many to do today and we have less help than we thought.

We bought a charcuterie board for our people today and we enjoyed that in the Fulfillment building.

I am about to go back out and do orders. Our Farm Store is open today. I need to get ready for the holiday but the orders come first. I hope you enjoy the recipes down below.

I spent the entire day closing orders except for when I waited on some customers at two times of the day. It stayed chilly all day long and I had the heater on low in Fulfillment for the entire time. The one employee who called in came in after just over an hour so that was good.

When the mailman came, he told me that he left a package at the post office and would go back and get it. He also told me he would put it in our mailbox. A few hours later, I was still mailing out orders and I saw his SUV in the parking lot, turning around. I went out to the store since his vehicle was over there but there was no package at all. I looked in all of the other buildings and I checked the ground and the mailbox twice. I found nothing. I checked with everyone to see if they had it. No one had it and nothing to be found so why did he come back just to drive around? I hope it was not anything important. It just makes no sense that he would come all the way back here and drive around the parking lot.

I finally finished the orders and came in about 6pm, made some dinner and let it all go for the day.

Christmas Treats - Toll House Cookies

Every year, just before Christmas, my grandmother, Elvina Yorgensen, made a huge batch of Nestle Toll House cookies for herself and for us. My father was an only child so she really doted on our family with delicious goodness all year long. So whenever I hear about Toll House cookies, it takes me back to Christmas in the 1960s where everything was wonderful.

I looked it up and the Toll House cookie recipe was invented in 1939 when a lady named Ruth Wakefield decided to add some Nestle semi sweet chocolate pieces in her batch of cookies. She was making cookies in the kitchen of the restaurant that she ran in Whitman, Massachusetts. She thought the chocolate pieces would actually melt. Instead, she invented the chocolate chip cookie, one of the best inventions ever!

This is her recipe below. My grandmother used to add walnuts to the recipe and it was very good. However, that was in New York where everyone adds walnuts to every recipe. We live in Texas so I add pecans instead.

I would wake up all through the night before Christmas, looking under the tree in the dark, looking at the Christmas presents. The Toll House cookies were in a beautiful, large tin with a Christmas scene on it and I would go to the tin and eat cookies each time I got up that night. I was always so excited that I just couldn't sleep. We did not get much through the year, but for Christmas, we always went all out at our house.


Toll House Cookie Recipe

These are cookies made with almond flour that I baked recently, not toll house cookies.These are cookies made with almond flour that I baked recently, not toll house cookies.

You will need:

  • 2 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) Nestlé Toll House Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (I suggest pecans) (if omitting, add 1-2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour)

Preheat your oven to 375°. Do not grease your cookie sheets.

Combine flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Set aside.

Beat the softened butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in a large mixer bowl until creamy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in chocolate morsels and nuts.

Drop by rounded tablespoons onto ungreased baking sheets.

Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely. Merry Christmas!


Tuesday, December 20, 2022 - Christmas Treats

Plastic is important for the greenhouse and for the animals. You have to keep that cold wind out!Plastic is important for the greenhouse and for the animals. You have to keep that cold wind out!

Good Tuesday morning. It is chilly again. I had to go unlock the business because Matt was stuck over at Parker's in Devine. They could not get their cash register up and running. He was there getting some things that David sent him for but they close too early, 5:30pm so Matt did not make it yesterday. Mainly, Matt is picking up plastic for this awful cold snap. We will put some up at the animal sheds so they are comfortable and out of the wind.

Today is my little brother's birthday. I was 11 when he was born and he was my Christmas present that year. He came home from the hospital on Christmas Eve. He was so much fun back then. I can't tell you anything I got for Christmas that year because I spent most of the time playing with him, my real life baby doll.

While I was out there unlocking the place and feeding the fish, a friend of David drove up with two boys, maybe 12? They are helping today. David thought he meant his older son in college, but that is not the case. Well, it turns out that the boys did some work but a lot of playing around and having fun with Alexa. A parent came and got them in the early afternoon. As I always say, no kids should work here.

I am back in the house. Matt got here. I am doing laundry before I go over, trying to get things done for Christmas in case we have company. I am also watching some prepping channel on YouTube that came up this morning. Interesting stuff.

Merry Christmas this week! I have wrapped nothing. Have you? I never did finish decorating my house. My kitchen is a mess. The island is packed with junk. The den looks like someone had a fit in it. Someone did. The puppies ripped some toys apart and they need to be cleaned up. I haven't made any Christmas treats.

This morning, David made some queso for the team and brought it out to Fulfillment at noon. It was really good.

It is now 3pm. We have not had a single customer all day long but I have filled a ton of online orders. We had two boys here to help us but they have done a whole lot of playing around and playing with Alexa from what I am told. Someone is coming to get them now.

Matt and Brendon are out back putting up plastic to protect our animals from the coming arctic temperatures.

I found some new recipes to make for Christmas. We found out that Ruth Anne, a family friend from Leakey, will be joining us for Christmas.

The FedEx man dropped off shipping labels for us. The mailman said he came in the dark at 6:30pm and put the missing package from last night in our mailbox. I told him I saw his vehicle in our parking lot at 5:30pm and I could not find the package. He said a girl was in another vehicle helping him so it must have been here but why would she come in here and drop off nothing? Very strange...

So we are having prime rib for Christmas. It is so tasty but always comes out more raw than cooked. Sometimes, we have to nuke it (microwave it) before we can eat it. Just not well done...It is way too expensive to become shoe leather.

I need to get in the house and wrap gifts and clean up the house a bit.

Matt had to leave at 4pm for an appointment. David called in Nacho and a helper to finish winterizing the animal areas to keep them out of the wind. They finally left around 8pm. It was dark then so I don't have any photos yet.


Christmas Treats - Ginger Snaps

Ginger Snaps are delicious with just a little spice. I used to make them a lot when my children were little. They are so good. Both of my grandmothers would make gingerbread men and we would decorate them. These are not rolled out, just small rounds of the delicious cookie coated with sugar. Absolute perfection!

You will need:

  • 3/4 cup butter, unsalted, room temp.
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves

In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugars. Then add the egg and the molasses. Mix well.

In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon and cloves. Then add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix well.

Chill the bowl of dough in the refrigerator for about an hour.

Preheat your oven to 325°. Line your baking sheet with a reusable cookie liner or grease the pan.

Roll the dough into one inch balls. Roll each ball in a bowl of granulated sugar. Place on the cookie sheet with at least two inches between balls. They will flatten and spread out when baking.

Bake for 12 to 15 minutes until the edges are golden brown. Leave on cookie sheet for about two minutes. Remove and cool on racks while you bake the rest. Enjoy!


Wednesday, December 21, 2022 - Christmas Treats

Good morning. It is cold, 38° and tomorrow it is supposed to be arctic. David made eggs and sausage for breakfast. The sunrise was beautiful. It is hazy out, almost foggy.

Happy First Day of Winter! Normally, it is warm on this day, but not today.

Our pastor came by to see the business and he is still here visiting. Angelica brought us all an enchilada lunch and it was delicious!

I did orders, paid bills, and found seeds at work. We worked on the new Spring Seed Set that will be coming out in the next week or two.

Then Encino Pest Control came to spray the business and the house.

The guys are out back getting the hoses and watering all set for the big freeze. It is now almost 3pm and very cold out. I can feel the arctic air about ready to pounce on us.

My car battery is dead but it says 2013 on it. It lasted a good long time.

The mailman brought two bills. We have not received one Christmas card at all. Can you believe that? Remember when everyone sent cards out? We always had a lot of cards when I was a kid. Even when I was a young wife, we would get a lot of cards. So much has changed over the years.


Christmas Treats - Sugar Cookies

As a child, I would help my grandmother as well as my mother roll out and cut out sugar cookies, either with cookie cutters or with a glass if it was not Christmas time. As a mom, I did the same thing with my children. They are fun to coat in colored sugar before baking or to frost after baking and add lots of edible decorations. Where have the years gone?

You will need:

  • 1 and 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 egg
  • 2 and 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • frosting or granulated sugars in whatever colors you want
  • sprinkles, raisins, chocolate chips, whatever edible small decorations you choose

Cream together the powdered sugar, butter, vanilla, almond extract, and egg together in a large bowl. Then add in the flour, baking soda, and cream of tartar. Mix everything together well. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for three hours.

Preheat your oven to 375° and lightly grease your cookie sheets.

Divide the dough in half. Take one half and roll out to about 3/16 of an inch on a flour covered board or the counter. Cut into desired shapes with a round glass or with cookie cutters and place on cookie sheets. Repeat with the other half of the dough.

If you do not want to frost the cookies, sprinkle them with white or colored granulated sugars before you bake them.

Bake until the edges are a light brown but the rest of the cookie is not, about 7 to 8 minutes. Do not over bake.

Cool on wire racks and decorate with frosting.

This recipe makes about five dozen cookies.


Thursday, December 22, 2022 - Christmas Treats

Pamela and Sue Ellen love running around, burning off energy. They are so darn cute! Sue Ellen is the ring leader. Pamela is shy and not very adventurous.Pamela and Sue Ellen love running around, burning off energy. They are so darn cute! Sue Ellen is the ring leader. Pamela is shy and not very adventurous.

Good afternoon! It is now 1pm. I have been busy this morning with customers and orders. The sky is again overcast and it is 57° but it will reach 17° tonight according to Alexa. I am not a fan of weather that cold! We have been winterizing the farm all week long. The animals are taken care of and most of the pipes. My new snapdragons have been covered up today. Not sure how long that will last because we have a windchill warning that goes into effect at 6pm today where the wind will be 20 mph and that will last through noon tomorrow.

Right now, it is mildly cool outside. Matt just brought us all lunch courtesy of us. It was supposed to be Chinese but the new restaurant was closed again when Matt went there. So MacDonald's it is. It was good. There is not much out this way to eat and hardly any stores either.

Merry Christmas. We have a wind chill that started yesterday afternoon and is lasting until noon tomorrow. Look at those flags fly!Merry Christmas. We have a wind chill that started yesterday afternoon and is lasting until noon tomorrow. Look at those flags fly!

Tomorrow, our Farm Store is closed and our team members have off for the Christmas holiday. However, the orders will still be coming in so I will have to come out here and pull orders and hand them to the mailman who has off next Monday. I am not looking forward to taking care of the animals in the Arctic weather or pulling orders out here alone but I will.

I need to get some baking done sometime today. A customer emailed us yesterday saying he would be here today at 1pm. It is now 1:20pm and no customer so I don't know if he is planning on coming or not. I hate to pack it up and go in and then I am not here to give him excellent customer service. I enjoy helping the customers and answering their questions.

This evening, I baked banana bread, an annual one of my Christmas treats, and had it cooling in the kitchen. David came in and cut off a big hunk before I got to take a photo. So then I got some. It was pretty good. I was going to do more baking but we watched Christmas movies instead and I fell asleep. Yes, I guess I am getting old.

The temperature dropped rapidly during the afternoon and it was in the 20s by dark. All evening, the electricity went out and came right back on because of the high winds. Each time, David had to go outside and turn heaters back on that would not come on by themselves. This actually occurred all through the night.


Christmas Treats - Peanut Butter Cookies

I have always loved to eat peanut butter cookies. No one in my family made them that I know of but when I was a mom, I used to make these for my precious children. Life was so much fun back then!

You will need:

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter, creamy
  • 1/4 cup lard
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 1 and 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Cream together the sugars, peanut butter, lard, butter and egg in a large bowl.

Add the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt and mix well. Cover the dough and let it chill in the refrigerator for three hours.

Preheat the oven to 375°. Do not grease your cookie sheets.

Shape the chilled cookie dough into balls that are about 1 and 1/4 inches. Place them three inches apart on the cookie sheets. Dip a fork in flour. Using the back of the fork, flatten the ball in a crisscross pattern on the cookie so it looks like a sort of tic-tac-toe board.

Bake for 9 to 10 minutes until lightly browned. Cool on cookie sheet for two minutes and then transfer to cooling racks.

This recipe makes 36 cookies at 85 calories per cookie.

Options: Sometimes, I will add either a small bag of peanut butter chips or a small bag of semi sweet chocolate chips to the dough before refrigerating.


Friday, December 23, 2022 - Christmas Treats

This is how dawn looked today in the Arctic blast.This is how dawn looked today in the Arctic blast.
God gave us the most gorgeous pink sunrise this morning in the freezing cold.God gave us the most gorgeous pink sunrise this morning in the freezing cold. It was truly stunning!

I woke up in the dark this morning. The electricity went off all night long. I got up at 6:15am and it was freezing. For the next hour, the electricity went off five times and came right back on. The sky started glowing pink early and then a beautiful pink sunrise behind the big oak tree out back.

It got down to 18° Fahrenheit with a wind chill of 8°. That is insane. No one should ever have to be that cold.

The fish are alive and I do not know how. The pond is moving and the falls are still going. The pool and hot tub are fine.

The animal water out back were all frozen. I had to break ice and I poured hot water in for them to drink but my guess is it won't last long. It is currently 11:15am and 26°. The high will only be 36° and the wind is supposed to stop at noon which is good.

I have been out in Fulfillment pulling and mailing orders. The mailman will come today. Yes, we are closed and our people are at home enjoying getting ready for Christmas.

Matthew showed up just before noon with lunch from a restaurant in Devine for the three of us. He got me beef soup, grilled chicken and rice with veggies. It was good. I am full and I need to go back and tidy up the house for Christmas. The mailman still has not been here. I hate to go inside and miss him because I want these orders to go out.

I plan on baking some cookies for the neighbors this afternoon and some buckeyes which are chocolate covered peanut butter candies. Sounds great! I have not made them before.

It is now 1pm and only 29°. A lot of businesses in San Antonio closed this morning because of the cold weather. I sort of feel like we could all die here in Texas because it is so cold. We are just not used to this cold weather.

I just got the notification that Christmas Eve Service at church has been cancelled due to the cold. Tomorrow it should get up to 43° (heat wave!) with a low of 23°. Well, I will enjoy staying home. The service was not until 7:30pm. It should have been scheduled for 5pm or 6pm, certainly not so late at night. Out here in the dark of winter, it is dark by 6pm and there are no street lights so 5pm would have been perfect.

I did get some baking done and I made the peanut butter filling for the chocolate covered buckeyes. Then I was just too tired to go on...


Christmas Treats - Penuche

Every year at Christmas, my grandmother, Mildred Pitcher, would make penuche. We loved it, the candy with the funny name. Let me explain that where I lived, many of the people were Italian so we learned to absolutely love Italian foods and sweets, even though we don't have a drop of Italian blood in us. So we always had penuche, fudge, and divinity at Christmas. Yes, we love our sweets!

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/ cup chopped nuts or whatever you might like to add (optional)

Butter a loaf pan that measures 9x5x3 inches. Over medium heat, cook sugars, milk, corn syrup, and salt in a 2 quart saucepan, stirring constantly. Do not leave it or it will stick to the bottom and burn. Keep cooking until the sugar dissolves.

Now, cook, stirring occasionally to 234° on a candy thermometer. If you do not have one, cook until a small amount of the mixture dropped into a very cold cup of water forms a soft ball that flattens when you pull it out of the water. At that point, remove from heat.

Add the butter and stir. Cool to 120° without stirring. Add vanilla at this point and beat vigorously without stopping until the candy is thick and no longer shiny, about 5 to 10 minutes. Stir in the nuts or whatever you want to add. spread into the buttered loaf pan and let the mixture cool until firm. Then cut into one inch squares.

This recipe makes 32 candies at about 85 calories per candy.


Saturday, December 24, 2022 - Christmas Treats

One of the loaves of Hawaiian bread we made today.One of the loaves of Hawaiian bread we made today.

Good morning and Merry Christmas Eve! It is 19° outside so I have not been out yet. I don't want to but I have to feed and water everyone out in the Arctic air. I also have to get everything prepped and ready for tomorrow. Christmas is on a Sunday this year so we will be at church but the meal still has to happen. Church is canceled for tonight but it is still on for Christmas Day.

I also need to clean my house. There will be no work going on today as far as orders go. It is time to make Christmas happen.

I went out early to feed the animals. All of the waters were ice. I carried hot water with me so I fixed that problem temporarily. It got up to 42° so by the time I put everyone to bed, they had water instead of ice.

What a busy day it was of cooking and baking. Matt came over to help me today. This is the first time he has ever come to help me with holiday prepping and cooking. He made the pecan pie, he set up the yeast dough for two loaves of Hawaiian bread, he rolled a whole lot of peanut butter balls for the buckeyes which taste delicious but did not come out looking pretty. I dipped them after he left for the afternoon so that is my fault.

Matt helped peel potatoes for the jalapeno potato casserole and chopped veggies. It was a productive several hours. I made a cherry dump cake and put together the jalapeno potatoes and the new to us broccoli casserole. Matt left at 1pm. David wanted a vermicelli salad as his mother always made one for Thanksgiving and Christmas so around 5pm, he came out to the kitchen and made it. I chopped the green onions, green pepper, and celery for him.

This morning, David's friend, Bart, brought over several briskets that he smoked. We had it for lunch and dinner. David dropped two off to different families. At $125 a pop, I think we were very generous.

The mailman came around 2pm and brought four bills. We had nothing for him to take because we did not do any orders today. Monday will be a very busy day for us but the mailman won't be around as they all have Monday off from work. I just hope we have the whole small crew show up. We still have not heard if the ex-employee we ran into last Sunday will be coming back to work for us. We have not found anyone new who fits the bill. In San Antonio, it was so easy to find workers.

Out here in the country, we notice that the people who want jobs are not interested in filling out paperwork or sending us a resume. One person actually sent us a three page resume when we asked for a one page. She told us to just go by the first page and to ignore the other two pages instead of just fixing it.

See, if they can't take simple direction when applying for a job, they won't be able to take direction when we tell them how to do things here. This has always been a problem. People think what we say is not necessary and they do the job the way they feel like doing it and that results in many errors which means the loss of money for us. We talk to them over and over and they keep doing it their way. That is why so many of them are no longer with us this year. However, we have the problem of having to do all of the work because there is no one else to do it.

Matt came back for dinner and the Svengoolie movie. Tonight's movie was Abbott and Costello Meet The Invisible Man and it was so much fun. This is one that I don't remember seeing before. No Christmas tone to it, but it sure was funny and so cool to see these two comedy geniuses at work.


Christmas Treats - Fudge

Both of my grandmothers and my mom used to make fudge. They would add walnuts or serve it up plain. I like to add pecans and/or raisins. I love chocolate covered raisins and raisins are good in fudge.

There are several ways to make fudge. Here is the recipe for one of my favorite ways.

You will need:

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 squares of 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate or 1/3 cup of cocoa
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/ cup chopped nuts or whatever you might like to add (optional)

Butter a loaf pan that measures 9x5x3 inches. Over medium heat, cook sugar, milk, corn syrup, salt, and chocolate in a 2 quart saucepan, stirring constantly. Do not leave it or it will stick to the bottom and burn. Keep cooking until the sugar dissolves and the chocolate melts.

Now, cook, stirring occasionally to 234° on a candy thermometer. If you do not have one, cook until a small amount of the mixture dropped into a very cold cup of water forms a soft ball that flattens when you pull it out of the water. At that point, remove from heat.

Add the butter and stir. Cool to 120° without stirring. Add vanilla at this point and beat vigorously without stopping until the candy is thick and no longer shiny, about 5 to 10 minutes. Stir in the nuts or whatever you want to add. spread into the buttered loaf pan and let the mixture cool until firm. Then cut into one inch squares.

This recipe makes 32 candies at about 85 calories per candy.


Sunday, December 25, 2022 - Christmas Treats

A beautiful Merry Christmas sunrise to start the day off right!A beautiful Merry Christmas sunrise to start the day off right!

Merry Christmas, Everyone! It is 21° which is insane at 6am. When I first woke up, David was up working in the den after 5am. I went back to bed but it was so cold even with the heater and blankets that I could not get back to sleep. My hip was hurting. I have not had hip pain before. Yes, this crazy cold is just a delight.

I am enjoying a cup of coffee and eating some of the Hawaii bread that we baked yesterday. It is pretty good. It is almost light now at 7am. I definitely don't want to go outside but I know that I have to.

Say Merry Christmas or just say yum with a cherry dump cake. I will have to put the recipe up. It was so good with cherry pie filling, pineapples, coconut, and pecans!Say Merry Christmas or just say yum with a cherry dump cake. I will have to put the recipe up. It was so good with cherry pie filling, pineapples, coconut, and pecans! One of the best Christmas treats!

Our friend, Ruth Anne from Leakey, is coming for church and Christmas dinner. Ruth Anne was a good friend to David's parents. Her husband died last November, a week before my father in law did. Their funerals were both on the same day. Matt will be joining us as well. It will be a small and quiet Christmas Day but that is okay.

David will be making the prime rib this morning. That is exciting!

I went outside to take care of all of the animals and just got back in. It is currently 27° and 8:15am. Amazingly, the rabbit's waters were not frozen but the chickens and guineas waters were. I took hot water out and fixed that. According to The Weather Channel, by 10am, it will be above freezing and it should hit 51° by 3pm. This coming week, there are no freezing temperatures and most days will be in the 70s. That is awesome.

David made eggs while I was outside. I feel much warmer since I went out and came back in. Funny how that works but I was freezing in my office before I went out.

Our friend from Leakey, Ruth Anne, arrived at 10:30am and Matt got here right after. We drove up in the church parking lot and the pianist asked Matt if he would like to play. He declined and then we said that Ruth Anne plays. Now, Ruth Anne is an accomplished pianist, playing and singing since she was a little girl. We thought the church pianist meant play a Christmas special. No, she turned all of the music over to Ruth Anne. Ruth Anne got up on the piano bench and went to town playing a beautiful Christmas medley before the service started.

Then she played all of the Christmas hymns, the offertory, and the closing. That church has probably never heard beautiful music like that before but Ruth Anne is a professional. She was awesome, so incredibly talented and what a beautiful gift she gave to the congregation on Christmas morning!

Ruth Anne brought us some wonderful Christmas treats which included Cranberry Jello salad with pecans and pineapples, Holiday Fruit cookies, and Snowball Cookies. They were all so good.

Our Christmas tree was pretty packed out on Christmas morning.Our Christmas tree was pretty packed out on Christmas morning.
Here is Ruth Anne playing some beautiful Christmas hymns on the piano at church. She blessed the entire congregation by sharing her musical talent with us on Christmas morning!Here is Ruth Anne playing some beautiful Christmas hymns on the piano at church. She blessed the entire congregation by sharing her musical talent with us on Christmas morning!
This is the best prime rib David has cooked over the last five years. It was so tasty!This is the best prime rib David has cooked over the last five years. It was so tasty!
This is the pecan pie that Matt made. It was delicious.This is the pecan pie that Matt made. It was delicious.

After church we finished cooking the meal. David had the prime rib cooking while we were at church. I baked the jalapeno potatoes and the broccoli casserole. Oh, I did not mention...David invited a man from church whom we had never met to come have Christmas dinner with us.

After we ate and cleaned up, we sat and talked and then we opened presents. Then it was time for Ruth Anne to go home since it would be dark by the time she got back to Leakey. She made some delicious cookies and a cranberry salad as well.

Here is David looking all cheerful as he opens a gift! LOL! He only smiled off camera.Here is David looking all cheerful as he opens a gift! LOL! He only smiled off camera.
Our friend, Ruth Anne, opening a gift after a magnificent lunch.Our friend, Ruth Anne, opening a gift after a magnificent lunch.

Once everyone was gone, I was exhausted. I cleaned up a bit and then took a shower and got into some comfy pajamas. I fixed a small plate of dinner and nuked it. David put on The Jeffersons. We are now on season 3. We watched some and I dozed off. Three times. David kept waking me up because I was missing it. LOL!

Thus, another Christmas is in the books.


Christmas Treats - Divinity

My grandmother, Mildred Pitcher used to make divinity at Christmastime and it was delicious. Later, as a young adult, one of my girlfriends made divinity all the time. She showed me how one day at her house and I have been making it ever since.

You will need:

  • 2 and 2/3 cups sugar
  • 2/3 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2/3 cup chopped pecans

In a 2 quart saucepan, add sugar, corn syrup, and water and cook over low heat, stirring constantly until the sugar is dissolved.

Then cook without stirring to 260° on a candy thermometer. If you don't have one, test a small amount of the mixture in a cup of very cold water. When the candy dropped in the water forms a hard ball, remove from heat.

Beat your egg whites (with absolutely no egg yolk or it won't work) in a bowl until stiff peaks form. Continue beating while you pour the hot mixture in a thin stream into the bowl of egg whites.

Add the vanilla. Beat until the mixture holds its shape and becomes slightly dull instead of shiny. Fold in the nuts.

Now, drop the mixture from a buttered teaspoon onto waxed paper. Let the candies stand at room temperature for at least 12 hours. Make sure you turn each candy over at least one time during the 12 hours until the outside is firm. Store the candies in an airtight container, if any are left...

This recipe makes 4 dozen candies and has 70 calories per candy.


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