Many years ago, a friend of mine told me that she had to get her laundry done that day, when I called her on New Year’s Eve morning and asked what she was up to that day.  She went on to tell me that if her laundry wasn’t all done by New Year’s Day, that she was sure to never be able to catch up all year.  The funny part about that, is that the comment stuck with me, and so yes every year after that, I make sure that all the laundry in the house is done on New Year’s Eve.  (with a family as large as mine, why chance it?)

It got me to thinking, what other traditions do people follow on New Years, and what is the meaning behind them?    I have done a little research and this is what I have found.

  • People eat cabbage to bring wealth in the New Year, as it is said the green tint represents paper money.
  • Some people eat pork and poultry on New Years.  The logic is that as a chicken stands, he scratches backwards and that symbolizes a return to the old.    Pigs will root their noses forward in the mud or ground and that symbolizes moving on to the New Year.
  • Make sure your salt shaker is full on New Year’s Day, so that you will prosper all year long.
  • Lentil beans symbolize coins, which will also bring wealth in the New Year.
  • Having lots of visitors on New Year’s day, people believe will bring good fortune in the New Year.
  • If the 1st visitor to your home on New Year’s Day is a man, expect good luck.
  • Laundry:  I told you about my tradition with laundry.    Others believe that if you do laundry on New Years, you will have hard work ahead that year.    Some also believe that you will “wash” people out of your life if you do laundry on New Year’s Day.
  • Some people believe the weather on New Year’s Day is indicative of the weather you will have that year.  Ex:  If it is windy , it means there will be floods. / if it is breezy, you will have summer rainfall / no wind, means a dry summer.  These particular beliefs regarding weather date back to Babylon times.
  • Noise Makers on New Year’s Eve, was done to drive away “evil spirits” from the New Year
  • Wearing a mask on New Year’s Eve, was to hide your identity from the “evil spirits”
  • Round Cake, people believe the eating a cake shaped in a round circle with rich ingredients symbolizes bringing things full circle
  • Kissing someone at midnight, means you will have a lavish love life that year
  • If you are working out at midnight, you will have a year of fitness
  • Eat 12 grapes, each one represents a month of the year, and will bring you good luck every month

These are the basics of what I have found.   Some of  the above listed, I follow myself and some I had never heard of.   I believe that traditions are a wonderful thing to pass down to our children.  It is what we hold on to , when we lose loved ones.  I think it is important to carry on with them , and hand down generation to generation.    

Each year, I make Corned Beef and Cabbage and a side dish of Black Eyed Peas with Ham.   My dad always made it on New Year’s Day and that of course is why I do it.  I would always call him on that day, no matter if it had been weeks since we talked or where our relationship was.   I would tell him I was making it and we would talk about when I was little and he made it.   I miss those phone calls, as my dad passed away several years back.   This year I will be making the traditional dishes again and thinking of him  

Do you have any other traditions, beliefs or customs that you follow for New Years?  I would love to hear about them in the comments below!!   

Praying that you have a safe and prosperous New Years Eve!!!

Hot Tea Month Giveaway

National Hot Tea Month

Great opportunity for Tea Drinkers!    Want to cuddle up and stay warm with some wonderful tea?    Enter below to win a 40  count variety box of single servings!!

January is a time for new beginnings, health, and family. Most of us have already made resolutions of one sort or another. Those that are simple to incorporate into our lives are the ones that we are most likely to stick with past January. The potential benefits of adding tea to our diets, it can aid in the ongoing battle of the bulge and increase the body’s immunity to colds and flu, in addition to that fact that it is so inexpensive makes it an easy addition to our routine. A positive change that we are likely to keep.
By no coincidence, January is also National Hot Tea Month. The healthiest teas are teas that are pure (no milk or sweeteners). If you want to drink them every day, you can – they’re good for you! So whether you’re drinking to new beginnings, your health, or domestic harmony, we’ve got a giveaway that will help you celebrate Hot Tea Month.

Read Full Review HERE

Thanks to our generous sponsor four lucky readers are going to win a 40-Count Variety Box of Stash Tea to start off their new year right! A total retail value of over a $100. Entering on the giveaway widget is easy and the more entries you complete the better your chances are to win! Enter Today & Good Luck!

☕ 4 will #WIN a #DashofStash when this Hot Tea Month #Giveaway ends 1/31 □ Join Me & Enter Too!

Welcome To The
Hot Tea Month

GiveawayDates: January 1, 2017 at 12:01 am EST through January 31, 2017 at 11:59 pm EST

Prize: FOUR lucky readers will win a 40 Count Variety Box of Stash Tea Single Serve Cups.

Hosted By: PaulaMS’ Giveaways, Reviews, & Freebies
Sponsored By: Stash Single Serve Teas
Co-Hosted By: IMHO Views, Reviews, and Giveaways and Deliciously Savvy

I would like to give a big shout out to all the blogs participating in this giveaway! I couldn’t do it without you. Thank you for bringing this promotion to your readers. Please take a minute to follow them!

Thank You

By following us on our social networks we are able to get the best giveaways together on the internet! 


Chances of winning depend on entries received.
Open to US residents 18 years and older
Winning entry will be verified


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: PaulaMS’ Giveaways, Reviews, and Freebies nor any blog promoting this giveaway, is not responsible for the awarding of the prize. Sponsors are responsible for prize fulfillment. Any Questions about this giveaway? Email Paula At paula_stewart (at) ymail (dot) com.

Disclosure of Material Connection: PaulaMS received the products mentioned above for free to facilitate the writing of this review. Some of the links on this blog post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I may receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, she only recommend products or services that she uses personally and believe will add value to readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

New Years Day and Black Eyed Peas


When I was little, every year my dad would cook Corned Beef and Cabbage for New Year’s Day   He would also serve Black Eyed Peas, and we all had to have our Black Eyed Peas sometime during the day.   As I got older and started my own family, I decided to carry on that tradition.

I sat here today, thinking oh my….I better get to the store and get my Corned Beef and Black Eyed Peas.   Now I must admit, that I have always done the peas the lazy way, and just bought them in a  can, warmed them up and that was our dish.   I may add a little bacon if I was feeling a little “festive” that day, but for the most part I just cut up some onion and added to the canned peas.   I personally love them, although I can’t say that for the rest of the family.  My hubby likes them as much as I do, however the kids are a different story.  Of course that didn’t stop me from mandating that they ate them each year.    My daughter, Tiffany, always holds her nose and swallows.   She seriously hates them!!  I only require they have a teaspoonful each New Years, so she manages.   This year she is pregnant , so I am curious to see how that goes over.   LOL  My granddaughters have decided that they way their Aunt Tiffany eats the peas is the best way to get through the mandate of having to have their teaspoonful each year.  

I have compiled a list of recipes for you below on how to make Black Eyed Peas from scratch, instead of just buying the boring can at the grocery store.  Several of the recipes call for either ham or sausage.  You may have a ham bone or ham leftover from Christmas, this would be a great way to finish it off and clean out the fridge!

I am hoping to entice my children to WANT to eat them this year, by trying one of these recipes.   I will include a write up about it after New Years and let y’all know how that goes.

A little history on  WHY we eat Black Eyed Peas:

Two popular explanations for the South’s association with peas and good luck dates back to the Civil War. The first is associated with Gen. William T. Sherman’s Union Army’s March to the Sea, during which they pillaged the food supplies of the Confederates. Stories say peas and salted pork were said to be left untouched because of the belief that they were animal food and not fit for human consumption. Southerners considered themselves lucky to be left with some supplies to help them survive the winter, and black-eyed peas evolved into a representation of good luck. In other traditions, it was a symbol of emancipation for African-Americans who had previously been enslaved before the civil war who became free officially on New Year’s Day                        (Per Wikipedia)

I am curious, what does your family eat on New Years Day?  Do you have any food traditions?   Let me know in the comments below so I can see what other families do.   If you chose one of the recipes I included, I would love to hear how that works out for you as well in comments!!!


Black Eyed Peas with Smoked Sausage

CrockPot Black Eyed Peas with Ham

Black Eyed Peas with Greens

Slow Cooked Black Eyed Peas

Bath and Body Addiction!!!



I have a small confession….I am a Bath and Body addict!!   Many years ago, while I was staying with my little sister on a visit, I used some of her Bath and Body shower gel, and I was instantly in love with their products.  On that same visit, we went to a sale that they were having and I bought so much that I had to purchase another bag to take on the flight home.  That was the beginning of my addiction.

Now, I have to admit, I have no desire to have any kind of intervention or rehab for my addiction.  All I need to know is when the next Semi Annual Sale will be and I can go get my Bath and Body fix!!   The good news…..that sale is happening NOW!!  Twice a year, they have a sale with 75% off the seasons scents, and that is when I go and stock up!!  They also have a ton at 50% off and some great buys on their hand soaps!!      I purchase not only for myself, but for my kids for birthdays, Christmas etc.    The Semi Annual Sale happens in the Summer time and then again, right after Christmas.  I always save enough of my Christmas fund, to go shopping afterwards!!  

I got the email that stated it started on Dec.26th this  year, and guess where I was that afternoon?  Yep, you guessed it….at my local Bath and Body store, along with about 50 other women.     The funny part is that as you walked up to the store, I saw about 5 or 6 men standing around waiting on their wives and girlfriends to come out.   I walked out of the store, I was not able to smell anything but the insane amount of scents that were sprayed and spritzed in the store.   I am not kidding, for over an hour, I kept smelling a variety of Bath and Body scents!   

When I got home and was able to finally smell normally again, I was so excited to unpack all the goodies I had got on my shopping trip!   You see, I only use Bath and Body shower gel , and no longer use any other type of soap while showering. and I always make sure I have enough stock on hand to re stock my bathroom.  In addition , to that I love the lotions and sprays as well, and always have the small portable sizes in my purse.


Here is the great part though when I totaled up what I had purchased, I had bought 4 shower gels, 2 body sprays and 3 hand soaps and only spent a total of $24.50!!   The retail price on them was $111.50.  So you can see why I love the Semi Annual Sale!!   I get to feed my good smelling addiction AND save money!!    If you are like me and love Bath and Body, click here, and you can go shop for your own deals!!  Be  sure to stock up on your favorite scents!!   


If you have used Bath and Body before, please let me know in the comments what your favorite scent is??   My all time favorite is Sweet Pea!!  I have found that there are a few others that I really like, but my list would be too long to put here.  So I will just wait to hear from y’all on what scents you love!

Christmas Morning Casserole


christmas-morningI have been making this Casserole for the past 15 years or so and serving it on Christmas morning.  I love the recipe because by the time Christmas morning comes, I am exhausted.   Most of the time I have been up half the night wrapping presents, or when the kids were little, I was putting some type of toy  together.    The last thing I wanted to do on Christmas morning , after cleaning up the chaos of Christmas all over my living room ,was to go in the kitchen and cook a big breakfast.   However, being the mom, I had to feed everybody!!

My older sister had made this one year , many years ago and I fell in love with it!!   You put it together the night before, and put in the refrigerator.   Then on Christmas morning as you are turning the coffee pot on (usually before 5 am in my house, as the kids would never let me sleep past that!) I pull it out and pop it in the oven.  By the time we are all done with gifts, breakfast is done!!    Easy Peasy!!!  Then I can kick back and relax and enjoy the kids and all their new toys…play games, watch the fashion show as they try on their new clothes, etc.

So here is my recipe for Christmas Breakfast Casserole   (of course, the recipe is good for any time of the year!)

  • Ingredients

    • 1 pound ground pork sausage
    • 1 teaspoon mustard powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 4 eggs, beaten
    • 2 cups milk
    • 6 slices white bread, toasted and cut into cubes
    • 8 ounces mild Cheddar cheese, shredded


    1. Crumble sausage into a medium skillet. Cook over medium heat until evenly brown; drain.
    2. In a medium bowl, mix together mustard powder, salt, eggs and milk. Add the sausage, bread cubes, and cheese, and stir to coat evenly. Pour into a greased 9×13 inch baking dish. Cover, and chill in the refrigerator for 8 hours, or overnight.
    3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
    4. Cover, and bake 45 to 60 minutes. Uncover, and reduce temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Bake for an additional 30 minutes, or until set.

What is your Christmas morning tradition?  Do you have a favorite family recipe?   I would love to hear your input below in the comments!!!



Neck Surgery and Life afterwards


It is hard to believe that it has been 7 years since my first neck surgery.   I say that because although a part of me feels like it has been a lifetime that I have been dealing with the pain from it, there is another part of me that has a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that life changed so drastically for me 7 years ago.

Prior to having my 1st surgery, I had been dealing with neck pain and the side effects of the damage to my spine, for about 20 years.   It of course, progressively got worse over the years.  At first, I would have occasional flare ups, where I wouldn’t be able to lift my head off the pillow in the morning.  On those days, my husband would literally have to come lift me from my shoulders, supporting my neck/head and lift my upper body up so I could sit up.   When I would have that kind of a flare up, I generally ended up on a heating pad for a couple of days.  I had been to our regular doctor, when I had one of these episodes, and had been given muscle relaxers to use when I had a flare up.   For the most part, they did the trick and I was able to return to work within a day or so and continue on with my normal activities, raising kids, taking care of the house, working, etc.  I would generally only have a flare up like that about every 4-6 months.   I knew at the time as I went through those episodes that eventually it would reach a point that I would have to make a different decision as far as treatment went.  I was right, as they started happening more frequently and the symptoms became increasingly worse.

About 9 years ago, I started having so much pain at work, that I couldn’t even sit at my desk and type, without tears streaming down my face due to the pain.  I had pain not only in my neck, but running down my arms and into my hands.  In addition to the pain, I would go completely numb or have massive tingling.   My neck would literally feel as though it almost locked up on me, due to the nerves that were in spasm.   

I made a choice to go with Chiropractic care first, since I knew that the only other option I had was to see a NeuroSurgeon and I wasn’t quite ready to go that route.    I loved my job and didn’t want to risk having to quit work due to the issues I was having.   Our Chiropractor was amazing !   After my initial consultation with him, he immediately set me up with some Spinal decompression treatments.   I would go in and have the decompression done 3-4 times a week..   During the time I went through the treatments, my symptoms started to lessen.  They didn’t completely go away, but I was certainly better.  I started to have some real hope that maybe, just maybe, I wouldn’t have to go the surgical route.   To this day, I am so thankful to our Chiropractor, for all that he was able to do for me during the 2 years he treated me.   I often say , he is the reason I didn’t have to have surgery sooner than I did.    However, eventually, we realized that my neck was no better and I needed to make a decision to go a different route.   

I finally broke down and went to a NeuroSurgeon, and he of course sent me for a ton of tests.   (MRI, nerve tests, etc)    It was determined that I had damage from C3 to T2 in my spine.  I had Degenerative Disk Disease.   I knew prior to going to him what my actual diagnosis was, as I had been given that information by our Chiropractor.  I can still remember my first visit with my NeuroSurgeon, after he had got my test results back and he came into the exam room to talk with me.  He looked at me and said, “ Mrs. Brandon, you have the neck of an 80 year old.”   Well, let me tell you, no 45 year old woman wants to be compared to an 80 yr old in any form or fashion!!   He was amazed that i had gone as many years as I had with no type of treatment for my neck.  I guess that was just the stubborn side of me.   My mom has had issues with her neck for  years and I knew it was hereditary and I guess I just didn’t want to hear the diagnosis.   Now to some of you , that may sound silly but to me , I knew what I was in for because I had watched my mom deal with it for so long.  

At any rate, I was told that in order to try and repair the damage to my neck, I would need surgery.  I will say that he told me right out the gate, that there was about a 50/50 chance of my symptoms improving.   I honestly didn’t like those odds, so of course I wanted to know what would happen if I chose to not have the surgery and just deal with it.   I was told that he couldn’t promise that the damage would become so severe that it would affect me long term and cause me to eventually not be able to walk or use my hands, due to the nerve damage that was being done and the fact that I had basically no discs left in my neck.   When he showed me the test results, there were several areas where I should be able to see discs, and they were gone!   I know that had I chosen to go to the doctor all those years ago, I could have avoided a lot of the damage that was done in my neck.  But I was young , dumb and stubborn and didn’t want to go through what I had seen my mom go through as far as neck surgeries.   

The 1st surgery he did was a Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion (ACDF) They basically go in through the throat area to fuse part of my spine together, from C3 to C5.   That was in December, but by March, the doctor had said he needed to go back in and do a more extensive surgery.   When he had done the 1st surgery, it had done what we feared would happen and put pressure and more damage on the discs below where had done the initial fusion.  With the 2nd surgery, he did a  Posterior Cervical Fusion, which is where they go in from the back of the neck.  This time they fused me from C6 to T2.   They also put in 2 titanium rods and 6 screws to hold the fusion in place and to align it all up.  The took bone from my hip and put into my neck to assist with my healing time.   That particular surgery was the roughest one of all.  The recovery from the bone being removed from my hip was almost more painful than the neck surgery.  

I was in a hard collar neck brace from March of that year until August , for a total of 5 months.  During that time , I was not allowed to take it off at all.  The only time i was allowed to take it off was to shower, and even then my husband or children had to give me my shower.   I can not tell you how thankful I am to my family for the care they gave me during those months and for more months after that  than I care to talk about.


At any rate, here I sit , 7 years later  wondering if it was all worth it?   What I mean by that , is I often ask myself if I had it all to do over again, would I actually do it?    Honestly, the answer to that question is usually a big fat NO!    I still have as much pain as I had before on a daily basis, if not more than I had prior to the 1st surgery!!   However, I know that if I hadn’t done it, I could very well be in worse shape than I am today.   Don’t get me wrong,    I am very thankful and blessed to be able to get up and function each day.  I miss working more than I can put into words, but I have found other things that I can do, that keep my mind active.   Writing this blog is one way I stay busy and being a Nana is another almost full time job.    I love writing this blog and my prayer is that somehow I am reaching others that can relate to what my story is, or at the very least, that it helps others in dealing with things in their own lives.

I know this was a long post and I want to thank you for taking the time to read it.    Please let me know below in the comments, if you know anybody that has neck or back issues?  Or maybe you know somebody that has Chronic Pain of another sort?  I love interacting with my followers/ readers!!


Designer Diaper Bag & Car Seat Cover Giveaway!!

Here is your chance to win a beautiful Designer Diaper Bag, Matching Car Seat Cover that doubles as a grocery cart cover and matching Bandana Bibs!!
All you have to do is scroll downa and enter via the form below!! Good luck and Have fun!!!

(this post contains affiliate links)

Sponsored By: Stachris

Hosted By: Love, Mrs. Mommy

2 Winners Will Receive: 

A Designer Baby Diaper Bag &
Car Seat Cover w/ Four Bandana Bibs & Pacifier Clips!

$118 in prizes for each winner!! A $236 TRV Giveaway!

Stachris is a family business that is named after their children. They work closely with moms to figure out their needs and wants, so that they can make their lives a little simpler. (Who doesn’t like the sound of that?!) They strive to bring quality-driven products at affordable prices. The cherry on top? Their products are super cute and fashionable! Gotta love that!
Open to US entries and must be 18+ to enter!
Giveaway Dates ~ 12/16 9:00 AM EST through 12/31 11:59PM EST
Good luck!
Disclosure: Love, Mrs. Mommy and all participating bloggers are not held responsible for sponsors who do not fulfill their prize obligations. Love, Mrs. Mommy received Stachris products at no cost to facilitate the above-mentioned review. This giveaway is in no way endorsed or sponsored by Facebook or any other social media site. The winner will be randomly drawn by Giveaway Tools and will be notified by email. Winner has 48 hours to reply before a replacement winner will be drawn. If you would like to participate in an event like this please contact LoveMrsMommy (at) gmail (dot) com.

Santa Claus Visit

santa-girls-dec-10-2016Today was one of my favorite Christmas traditions that I do with the granddaughters.   We all bundled up in warm clothes, because of course our high today was only 32 degrees!   Then we piled in the car and headed out to go visit Santa and Mrs. Claus!!    


The cool part about our yearly visit to go see Santa, is that my granddaughters have been going to see the same Santa since they were 7 and 8 months old.   Each year we will track down where he is going to be and we make sure that we go see him.   There have been a couple of years in the past 10 that we have been doing this, that we almost missed him.   Thankfully, that hasn’t happened and we have pictures with the same Santa and same pose, since the girls were babies.   My youngest granddaughter is going to join in on the tradition this year, her mommy is taking her to see him next weekend.  20151219_101452   

santa-crystal-2016 20151219_100252


The couple that plays Santa and Mrs Clause also run a petting zoo here in town and they actually raise Reindeers.   We learned today on our visit, that Reindeer shed their antlers at least once a year.  When we went to visit today, the Reindeer they had with them had shed on of his antlers and only had one.    It was kind of cool, because the girls ended up getting an educational lesson on how they do this and why they shed them.   They wanted to know if it hurt them to lose the antler and Mrs Claus described it the girls, it was like them losing a tooth.   Apparently normally they will shed them in March, but because we have had such a warm November and December (prior to today of course), they  are shedding them early this year.

20151219_100548 santa-reindeer-dec-10-2016 santa-reindeers-dec-10

When  you arrive to visit Santa, you will see his Reindeer along with the sled and of course Mrs. Clause..  It is a realistic and cool experience for the kids, instead of the traditional , Santa with a big chair kind of visit.    I don’t  think that the couple that does this make a lot of money so I believe that they do this for the sheer love of spreading Christmas cheer.  They do give you the opportunity to purchase pictures, but they don’t mandate that you buy from them.   They always pose for me when I have our camera or cell phone and it doesn’t matter to them if you purchase a picture from  them or not.   We have always purchased a picture package, simply because I want to support them and make sure that they continue to have Santa visits for kids to come in the future.   The pricing on their pictures is extremely reasonable, I only pay $7 for 2 5×7 pictures or you can pay $10 and get an 8×10 and 2, 5×7 pictures!   


I can remember those years when the girls were toddlers and were scared to death of the man in the beard and didn’t want to get in the sleigh and take the picture.   Yes, in case you are wondering, I do have a couple of the pictures where the girls were crying and just wanting down.   As the Nana , I was standing to the side encouraging them to visit and take a picture while Mommy would get in the sleigh with them to take the picture.   

If you live locally (Cookeville, TN) , you can go visit our Santa at Tractor Supply next weekend , Dec. 17th here in town.  

I am wondering , do you take your kids to see Santa?   Has it always been that perfect picture, or have you had our experience where the kids are just crying and screaming and wanting down?    Let me know in comments below what you do at Christmas time and Santa Pictures?

Holiday Traditions



Holiday traditions are such an important part of families and so I thought I would share with you a little about one of my families.  

Years ago, when we first moved to Tennessee, we had moved away from all our family, so I had to come up with some new traditions to do with my kids.   Prior to moving, we had always gone and did things at different family members.  I have to say although I miss my family dearly, I do love the new traditions that I do with my children and now my grandchildren.  


One of our favorite things is I bake a ton of cookies and candy.   I get the kids in the kitchen with me and they help bake 3-4 different types of cookies (chocolate chip, sugar cookies, peanut butter cookies, etc) and a couple of different candies.   Once we are done baking, then we spend another 2 days decorating all the sugar cookies.    If we had friends stop by, or the kids had friends over, then we everybody was included in our sugar cookie decorating extravaganza.   I can remember many years where we had frosting flying everywhere!!    Once all the cookies are decorated ,  I put plates together filled with all the goodies we have spent days baking and decorating.  We then dig out the Santa Hats, bundle the kids up and I’ll send them out to each of the neighbor’s houses with the plates of cookies in hand.    It started out with just the 2 in back of me and both neighbors on each side of me.   As the kids got older, they started adding houses, so that now, I do about 8 -10 houses.  At one point, my daughter Tiffany asked if they could sing Christmas Carols when they went and delivered the cookies.  I of course, told her yes, you guys decide which songs you want to sing, and then when they answer the door, you can sing to them.  during that  We  have lived in our home for 16 years,  and we have been doing the cookie / candy plates for about the last 14-15 years!!    I never realized until a couple years ago , that my neighbors have come to love those plates of cookies.  One of my neighbors daughters, that has since grown up and moved away from home, texted me and asked if I was doing my traditional plate of cookies and if she was still going to get some,even though she had moved off the block?    I was so touched by that simple little text!   Of course, my answer to her was  yes, and  I now make sure to make an extra plate for her.   My kids are almost all grown now, but I have 2 granddaughters that now continue the tradition wth me.   Although, I have to say that my older daughters, still come and help decorate and give out the plates of cookies.   My middle daughter Tiffany is my BEST cookie decorator, so there is no way I am letting her off the hook!!  Mama needs her!!

christmas-cookie-2013-tiffany christmas-cookie-2013-natalie christmas-cookie-2013-mike-priscilla










I am curious, what is YOUR family tradition?   Do you bake with you mom/ grandma?   Or do you have another Holiday tradition you would like to share?   Please leave me a comment below and let me know, as I love hearing from my readers!!

I thought I would share some of my Cookie Recipes here with you ,  I hope you enjoy them!    Let me know if you have some favorites that you use?   I would be happy to see if there are any I can add to my own!


With Cream Cheese Frosting


  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
  • 2 tablespoons evaporated milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  1. Cream together 1 1/2 cups white sugar, butter or margarine, 1 teaspoon vanilla, and eggs. Add sour cream.
  2. Mix together 5 cups flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, baking powder and baking soda. Gradually add to the egg-sugar mixture.
  3. Cover and chill dough for 1 hour.
  4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  5. Roll out on lightly floured surface to 1/4 inch thick. Cut out cookies. Bake on lightly greased cookie sheet for 10 – 12 minutes.
  6. To Make Frosting: In small bowl, with mixer at medium speed, beat together the softened cream cheese and evaporated milk until smooth. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1/8 teaspoon salt and confectioners’ sugar. Beat until well blended. Color as desired and frost cooled cookies


(16 oz.) dry roasted, unsalted peanuts  1 jar(s)
(16 oz.) dry roasted, salted peanuts   1 jar(s)
1 pkg  (12 oz.) semi-sweet chocolate chips
4 oz  sweetened german chocolate (green packaging), broken into pieces
3 lb (two 24 oz. pkgs.) white almond bark, broken into pieces

there are several different brands, you’ll just have to use the brand found in your area. manufacturer’s have lowered the ounces in some packaging, so use the equivlaent of 3 lbs.

Put ingredients into a 4 or 5-quart crockpot in EXACT order as listed. Cover and cook on LOWEST setting [on your appliance] for 3 hours. DO NOT remove lid! Turn off and allow to cool slightly. Mixture will not be melted but will be soft. Mix thoroughly and drop by teaspoon size cookie dropper or a teaspoon onto wax paper. Let cool thoroughly. Makes approximately 150 – 170 pieces, depending, of course, on how large you make the pieces…

Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) margarine, softened
    DO NOT use Butter!   Your cookies will be thicker and fluffy if you use margarine.
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (optional)

PREHEAT oven to 375° F.

COMBINE flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in morsels and nuts. Drop by rounded tablespoon 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.




Winter Is Coming / $10 WalMart Gift Card Giveaway


Here is a chance to win a $10 WalMart EGift Card!    Do you need some extra Christmas funds to finish out your shopping ?   Or maybe you would rather save it for the “Day after Christmas” sales, like I do!  I love those sales, I go the morning after Christmas and get new decorations to put up for the following year.   I always have to stash away a few dollars, so I will have something to hit the stores with, and WalMart is almost always my 1st stop that morning! .


$10 WalMart Card

I have teamed up with The Kids Did It and The Mommy Island to bring you this great Blog Hop.   Below you will find a list of over 100 blogs with a huge assortment of Giveaways going on each blog!   So after you have entered to win the $10 WalMart gift card , scroll down and click on the list you see below .   Grab your favorite blanket, curl up on the couch or your comfy chair, grab a cup of coffee/cocoa/wine, and start entering!    I hope you find that Blog Hopping is as fun as I do!!   

Enjoy and Good Luck!!

Don’t forget to comment below and tell me you entered and what you would do with the Gift Card if you win!!