November 24, 2015
Ah, Thanksgiving. Minor decorating. No gift-giving. Just food, family, and football. That’s my kind of holiday.
It’s always been one of the year’s highlights for me. While growing up, we ate Thanksgiving lunch at my Grandma’s house. Always a feast! We would eat until we couldn’t hold another bite. Then, a few hours later, we managed to do just that as all of the desserts made their appearance. My grandma baked an array of pies. Chocolate, lemon, butterscotch, and pecan.
But the best dish she made for the meal was her dressing. If I could go back in time, I’d put myself in her kitchen and watch her make it. Moist and delicious. And the first scoop on my plate when it came time for seconds.
I’m including a recipe for dressing with a few surprise ingredients that break away from tradition. Enjoy alongside your turkey and family this Thanksgiving.
Sausage and Apple Dressing
9-10 cups bread, broken into small pieces
1 pound sage sausage, cooked, crumbled, and drained
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and diced
¼ cup onion, diced
½ cup butter, melted
1 egg, beaten
2 ½ -3 cups chicken stock
Salt and pepper
To a large bowl, add bread and cooked sausage. (This presents a great opportunity to use leftover rolls, buns, and end pieces of bread.)
In a skillet, cook onion and apple pieces. (Cook in a little butter or sausage grease.) Sautee for about 2 minutes over medium heat.
Add to bread and sausage mixture. Mix in egg and melted, cooled butter. Season with salt and pepper.
Stir in about 2 cups of broth. Add more as needed. Mixture will need to be moist.
Spread into buttered 9x13 pan. Bake around 30 minutes on 350.
November 22, 2015
Five birthdays in five months for our little family equals a lot of cake.
We began the festivities last month’s with Cayson's ninth birthday. This month we put five candles on Walker's cake. December and January belong to me and then my hubby. We will finish the parties in early February when Camden will turn 12.
Throw in some other relatives’ birthdays along the way and Thanksgiving and Christmas, and well, that’s more cake and a lot of celebrating.
Thinking about those cakes, those celebrations, and those lives really emphasize how much I have to be thankful for.
It’s easy to sometimes get pulled down in the bumps along the way, especially when the way seems uncertain. I am extremely thankful to serve a God who remains faithful and who loves with an unwavering love.
“Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift.” 2 Corinthians 9:15
What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?
November 20, 2015
I’m pretty sure I just made the list of Dairy Queen’s most annoying customers. It was not a life goal of mine, but I accomplished the task anyway. Sigh.
The award was given at the end of a long day. After 8 PM. After I finished my second part-time job of the day. I walked in, Buy One, Get One free coupon in hand. I was tired. I was on the verge of losing my voice. And I was indecisive. My husband’s text reply to what flavor Blizzard he wanted was, “Fudge something.” Way to narrow it down, honey.
So obviously the odds were already stacked against me. I stood there, staring at the list of options. I had gone in with the Candy Cane Oreo Blizzard in mind, but was quickly distracted by chocolate this, peanut butter that.
I started with the “Fudge Something” order. After finding out many options of brownies, nuts, and cookie crunches, I settled on brownie pieces, pecans, and the infamous hot fudge sauce.
Why, oh, why, didn’t I just order the same thing for myself?
Poor girl behind the register. I’m sorry. You were awesome. Patient, kind, and supportive through the process. I’m sorry I may have caused you to doubt taking an after-school job. I’m sorry I may have caused you to fear the aging process you witnessed before your eyes. I’m sorry that I didn’t just order your favorite of Reese’s Cup. I am sorry.
But thank you for offering explanations of strawberry syrups and candy bar add-ins.
Throughout the ordeal, I laughed at myself, apologizing for my inability to make a decision about ice cream.
I finally decided: Chocolate Chip.
Plain, somewhat boring, but a decision nonetheless.
As I walked out, I once again thanked the cashier and offered by apologies. She replied to both with a sweet smile and I’m fairly certain with a silent prayer pleading that I not return.
Oh, but return I will. Next time I will enter with my order confirmed solidly in my mind.
I’ve already started thinking about what it may be. Started thinking as soon as I started on that blizzard which somehow didn’t end up being Chocolate Chip.
With the first spoonful I realized I had gotten Cookie Dough.
Funny. All of that thinking and wondering and questioning. Didn’t affect the outcome. The end result was out of my hands.
“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” (Matthew 6:37)
"In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps." (Proverbs 16:9)
Words I need to remember before getting all caught up in life’s dilemmas.
Those times when I'm trying to fix it and control it and determine the outcome. Through nervous laughter when I know the odds are stacked against me and I lose focus of Who already knows the ending to the storyline.
Through the planning and deciding and ordering Blizzards.
Maybe next time I can skip all of the anxiety and go straight to the sweetness.
Don't get bogged down in worry and anxiety. Read more about letting those worries fly away.
November 17, 2015
Is it me or does a five year old sound a whole lot older than a four year old? Maybe it’s because a four year old is just emerging from the toddler years and a five year old is on the cusp of…well, let me whisper it…kindergarten.
As of yesterday, my baby decided to make the big leap from four to five with a birthday.
While I’m happy to linger in these early years for a while, Walker is already thinking about way down the road.
“Do I have to grow a beard? I don’t want to grow a beard.”
“When I’m a grownup, will I still be able to talk like Daffy Duck and my other languages?”
I suppose those questions will have to wait to be answered. In the meantime, he has plenty of others for us to attempt to answer.
“Does anybody wish they had a volcano in their yard?”
“Are there video games in heaven?”
“Can ants swim?”
“If there was a hippo in your bedroom, would you sell the house?”
Thinking and talking. Two of Walker’s specialties. Trying to answer his questions. Sometimes a struggle for me.
While taking in this whole becoming a big boy thing, I’ve found myself asking some of my own questions.
“Can this child be any cuter?”
“What exactly is he thinking?”
“How many more statements will he have to declare at bedtime?”
“How did I ever deserve such an amazing child?”
Deserving really has nothing to do with it. He, along with his brothers, are a gift.
No question about it.
"Children are a gift from the LORD." Psalm 127:3
November 15, 2015
Looking back over the past few week’s posts on the blog, the evidence is clear: I love carbs. The case against me is pretty much secured as the aroma of cupcakes baking surround me as I type this post.
Be sure to try two fall favorites, both the carb-loving kind.
Not a baker? Rather pick up your cupcakes pre-iced or pumpkin doughnuts from the store? It is okay. We all come to the table with different strengths.
Life, especially motherhood, isn't a competition.
Oh, and those cupcakes? They are for a special someone who happens to be turning 5 tomorrow! My baby!
As we began our partying yesterday, the fact wasn’t lost on me that while we were celebrating life, so many around the world are mourning loss. Loss of loved ones and peace and security.
In difficult times, it's tough to see how we can be a light. Keep shining in this dark world.
May we cling to the promises of God’s Word.
"The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit." Psalm 34:18
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