Don't Miss Out!
Subscribe to have access to FREE printables, ONLY available to our subscribers!
Don't Miss Out!
Subscribe to have access to FREE printables, ONLY available to our subscribers!
This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking them, we will be compensated, but there is no additional cost to you. All opinions expressed are our own. Thank you for your support.
My son leaves for Cote d'Ivoire, in Africa, for his mission for the Church in just 9 days! He will be gone for 2 years. I wrote about that here. He leaves just before Christmas. So, last night we had a special "Jacob's Christmas" for him to let him have a bit of a celebration and we gave him gifts of things that he will need on his mission. We also made sure we had some of our family favorite holiday treats so he wouldn't feel like he had missed out on them when he wakes up in Africa on Christmas Day. It is funny how there are certain family favorites that you must have each holiday or you just don't feel like Christmas was complete.
This morning, I woke up and made some Hot Orange Punch. I had made some last night, but it was all gone this morning and the chilly weather made me want some. As I sipped it I thought I should share the recipe with you and then Lindsey reminded me that she had already posted about Hot Orange Punch last year! But it is such a favorite, and so warm and comforting, (which I really need since I am about to send my youngest child halfway around the world), I decided I would share with you the recipe again and put together a little round-up of some of our other traditional recipes that we still love and that are must haves each Christmas.
Besides Hot Cocoa Bombs, this is one of our favorite drinks during the holidays. LIndsey especially loves it and she blogged about it here. It is warm, tasty and comforting. It makes you feel better if you are under the weather. The recipe is on her post.
I love using my Waechtersbach Christmas teapot and mugs that my husband and I bought in Germany many years ago. You can't get my exact ones anymore, they say West Germany on the bottom of them! But the pattern is still available on Amazon here!
These are from my childhood! Growing up, we just called them Mounds. We loved them all year round, but on this post I made them a little more festive!
This one is also from my childhood! My kids love it and one of my sons was mad that I shared the recipe last year because he holds this fudge so dear! It is the best peanut butter fudge ever!
The next two "recipes" are not food, but recipes for a wonderful Christmas with your family.
One of the things that Jacob asked to do last night at his Christmas was to watch the movie, "A Christmas Story" together. We have a number of movies that we love to watch that never fail to bring the holiday spirit. Here is the list we put together of the Top 10 Christmas Movies of All Time! For us, A Christmas Story is probably the favorite. We usually have it playing all day on Christmas so that we can laugh at which ever part is on as we walk past it. It is just so funny.
I explain this tradition on this post. Jacob has a beautiful bass voice and I have to admit as we all sat around last night singing to the tree together for his Christmas, and I heard him singing his part on "Angels We Have Heard on High", I got pretty teary eyed and the sopranos had one less voice for a bit. I'll be missing that voice over the next two years. This tradition is my most favorite of all.
Those are just 5 simple things that we do to celebrate Christmas in our family. We also try to share with others and spread the joy of the reason for the season, and #light the world! That is why Jacob is going halfway around the world!
Maybe you would like to adopt some or our ideas, or maybe you already do something similar. Tell us about your traditions in the comments. We would love to hear about them.
This post contains affiliate links. I will be compensated for any purchases made through those links at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support!
I am back with a new recipe, and I hope that you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Are you gearing up for all the holiday festivities of Christmas? I really wanted to get the house decorated the day after Thanksgiving. It took a little longer that planned, and to be honest, our tree is still not completely decorated. I am so pregnant. Plus it was 90 degrees here the day after Thanksgiving. Actually, that whole weekend was hot. Who wants hot weather at Thanksgiving? NOBODY!
That is actually one reason why I love this recipe this week because making it made our house smell like fall!!!
Remember this post where my mom canned some of the apples that she and I bought? Well I decided with the leftover ones I was going to make apple butter and can it.
I have really enjoyed getting into canning this year. I hope to bring you more canning recipes. Canning is a great way to build your food storage! It is actually a lot of fun! This recipe is so simple. Once you peel and core the apples you leave them in the crock pot for a solid 8-10 hours. I did mine overnight and then I canned when I woke up in the morning. Your whole house will smell like apple pie. You're welcome. Here are a few tips:
1. I did not chop up the apples after I peeled and cored them. Also, I didn't worry about any little bits of skin left on the apples.
2. Speaking of peeling and coring, make sure you have a good apple peeler, it makes all the difference.
3. Really pack your apples in. I just peeled and sliced until my 6 quart crock pot was full, but after ten hours it cooks down. I ended up doing two batches and got three cans out of each. I think if I had done them all together I could have gotten seven jars of apple butter. So pack those apples in there because they'll reduce down while cooking.
4. I did a water bath for the canning. Now, here are some rules about canning that I didn't follow: you are not supposed to let your jars touch the bottom of your pot. You should use a canner to keep them in place and separate. I just stuck them in the pot. Luckily, they did not break. However, be wise, and use a canner so you can be assured that all of your cans will come out of the pot and you won't have any apple butter casualties (trust me, nobody wants that.)
5. Have plenty of snacks on hand to spread on your apple butter. It's really delicious.
6. Enjoy it! Share it with your adorable 18 month old nephew who will inhale it like apple sauce. Be in love with his cute little apple butter covered face. That's what I did and I highly recommend it.
DON'T FORGET! If you're in the Phoenix area this Saturday come see us at the Ugly Sweater Express! We'll be selling our famous Hot Cocoa Bombs! You can try them out, sign up for our email, and much much more!!
Click on the picture below to get more ideas for family history activities.
We all love doing this blog because it is really a family affair. My mom has talked about that a lot. It means a lot to me too. Alicia lives the furthest away from all of us, but no matter where any of us lives, we can contribute to this blog, and we're thankful to everyone who comes to read what we write, and take part in our activities and recipes.
With the holidays upon us, everyone really starts focusing on families and it is great! I love families! I believe that families are forever. That is a pretty big concept in our church. We are big on doing our family history, because family is important. My Sister in Law Jessica is a family history guru/wizard/genius and she is always working on some great family history project, including a book she put together for my dad for Christmas last year. She even started a blog where she shares tips on how to do your own family history. She inspires me to want to be better at doing my own family history. Just yesterday I got my DNA results back from Ancestry.com and I am excited to see what connections I can make from that.
Well, as you know, I do a weekly recipe post and I think family recipes are so important. What you remember your mother/father/grandmother/great-grandmother making in the kitchen, whichever cookbook has been passed down through the years, usually tells a story about where you come from and how you got here. So I love this activity that I found on the family search website! You can do it with your own family and gather all of your family recipes in one place! You'll learn a lot about your own family that way!
My cousin Laura shared on Facebook the other day that she was trying to tell someone about our family recipe for Surprise Pudding, and lo and behold, the one that came up WAS her family recipe! It was ours from this blog! We have shared so many family recipes with you here and I am going to list a few of my favorites and then ask, what are your favorite family recipes?
The Pie Series:
We love pie in my family, so I obviously can't forget to remind you about these great pie recipes we've shared with you.
1. The Best Pie Crust: you have to start with a good foundation, otherwise there is no point. I use this pie crust for all of my pies, and I use it when I make quiche! It is the best and so easy!
2. Blackberry Pie: Fruit pies are a traditional American classic and we have some great recipes for them in our family!
3. Pecan Pie: My dad LOVES pecan pie, so this is a mandatory recipe at every family gather! I can't remember a Thanksgiving or Christmas without it!
4. Pumpkin Pie: Obviously! Did you think this one wouldn't be a family favorite? I LOVE Pumpkin Pie!!!
5. Apple Pie: I would contend that my mom makes the best apple pie in the world. I'm sorry, but it's true. Lucky for you, she shared her recipe here, and she also shared how to can your own apple pie filling here! Now your pie can be just as good as hers!
Peach Cobbler: Growing up, whenever we went camping I knew that one night of the trip we were going to have peach cobbler made in the dutch oven. I looked forward to it so much! I still contend that my mother never made it otherwise. She disagrees, but I think if she made it at home she ate it all and never saved me some. So I still equate this recipe with family camping trips!
Hot Cocoa Bombs: Of course I had to share this one, the one that started this blog. It's a pretty new family recipe, but it is special to us since we came up with it together. Don't forget to check out our Etsy shop where you can buy the booklet and learn to make your own Hot Cocoa Bombs! From our family to yours!
I hope you'll take part in this activity and let me know your favorite family recipes. With the holidays upon us, it is the perfect time to learn more about your family through what you eat! Happy cooking!
Creators of Hot Cocoa Bombs! (copyrighted)
Helen Reynolds: Mother of six children , grandmother to nearly nine and counting! I love to cook, craft and create things and I especially love doing that with my family, So, when my lawyer daughter, Lindsey, and my artist daughter, Madalynn, and I came up with the idea of Hot Cocoa Bombs, this blog was born. Read more about us here!
Get my Blog Button
<div align="center"><a href=" http://threewinksdesign.weebly.com" title="3WinksDesign"><img src=" http://threewinksdesign.weebly.com/uploads/4/2/4/5/42456147/button_orig.png" alt="3WinksDesign" style="border:none;" /></a></div