Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Merry Christmas

Everyone has holiday traditions; or they should. Our family celebrates Christmas with several traditions.

1) A real tree that we usually cut down at a tree farm that we decorate while sipping hot chocolate and munching on Christmas cookies.

2) Secret Santa~we pick names on Thanksgiving after dinner and give gifts to our recipients until Christmas Eve.

3) Our annual Christmas Eve party~just us ~we light every candle we have, light luminarias on the front walk, turn on Christmas songs, put out a table full of appetizer-type food and reveal our Secret Santas with a final gift. We also try to watch a Christmas Movie that night.

4) We put out Magic Reindeer Food before the kids go to bed on Christmas Eve.

5) I stay up after the kids are in bed and wrap presents by "Christmas light" and make "Santa's Footprints" on the floor with baby powder.

6) In the morning I wake the kids (YES, I am up before they are!) by ringing bells and telling them they just missed the Big Guy.

7) New this year will be a bowl full of oranges (clementines) and a small bowl full of pennies in remembrance of my grandfather Theodore Sharp~when he would wake on Christmas morning there was an orange and a penny in his stocking and they always had homemade vanilla ice cream on Christmas Day. I want my children to always understand how fortunate they are that we are able to have so much. We are actually very poor by today's standards but I still believe we are richer than most in what we do have, and I am very grateful for it. I want them to learn that as well.

On to menus! Our Christmas Eve party varies slightly in some aspects each year but there are mainstays that we cannot be without and they are:

Cajun BBQ Shrimp

Chicken Cheese Spread
A plateful of various fish; smoked oysters, kippers, etc.Nanaimos

We also usually have cheeses and crackers, a bowl of candy and Chex mix! My kids worship that stuff.

For Christmas dinner this year I wanted to go as simple as possible without losing any of the festive feel of the day. We will be having:

Roast pork loin and new potatoes with rosemary and garlic (there's mom's rosemary!)

Green bean casserole (kids' request)
Baby asparagus
White corn
Relish tray
Homemade rolls


Croquembouche (I will have to take a picture)
Cherry pie
Cookies etc.

Here are a few of the recipes, I won't repeat ones I have already posted.


Cajun BBQ Shrimp
Printable Recipe

3 slices bacon-diced fine

2 sticks- 1 c. margarine (NOT butter)
2T. Dijon mustard
1 1/2t. chili powder
1/4 t. dried basil
1/4 t. dried thyme
black pepper to taste
1T. crab boil
1/2t. Tabasco
1 1/2 lbs large shrimp-shell on

Cook bacon in a large oven proof pot until brown. Add margarine and melt. Add remaining ingredients and place in oven-uncovered. Bake at 375 degrees F for 20 minutes.

These are great even with the shell still on and eaten with the shrimp.

Chicken Cheese Spread
Printable Recipe

2-8oz. pkgs. cream cheese (softened)

2 cans Underwood Chicken Spread
1/4 c. green pepper-small dice
1/4c. peanuts-chopped fine

Mix all and chill-allow to soften slightly before serving with crackers.

Variations on green peppers and peanuts:
red pepper and walnuts

grated carrot and raisins
dried apricot and pecans

Magic Reindeer Food
Printable Recipe

Santa can't help but stop if the reindeer take him to your treat!
Mix together:

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup instant oatmeal
2 tbsp of glitter (substitute edible sprinkles if you live in an area with wildlife)


eyes_only4him said...

I love your tradtions...I love the cleminties and the very cool

that brb cajun shripm is giving me heart burn just thinking about it..Yum Yum

Mise en Place said...

Great traditoins! We have started some in our house too. Oh, by the way, set another plate for dinner, I'm leaving now, lol!

Everything sounds delish!!

Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas

and actually that would be poor by American standards.
Most of the world is MUCH poorer than the poorest American.

I try to teach my kids that possessions are not the key to happiness but it sure is hard with commercials and their friends at school.

dalene said...

On my way upstairs to make our traditional Chex Mix and wanted to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a warm and wonderful holiday season with your loved ones. Thanks for sharing the great recipes and the sweet thoughts! I am always inspired by reading your blogs.

Mamacita (The REAL one) said...

My family loves clementines. I'm taking a break while my yeast dough rises; I'm making our traditional cinnamon-pecan rolls and hoping they don't rise into their usual semi-pornographic shapes this year.

Anonymous said...

Have a very Merry Christmas!!!!!

Anne Coleman said...

Christina-that BBQ Shrimp is SO good-you have to try it sometime

Hey momyblogr-come on over! The more the merrier-and bring the rest of the family too!

Novaks-too true-the family we rent from are missionaries to Uganda-they see alot of the "poorness" (not a word) on a daily basis. Merry Christmas to you too and all those great babies!

Writer-you are too kind -as always. Have a wonderful holiday!

Mama-ooooh-can I change my plans? I LOVE cinnamon rolls-and pecans to boot! YUM. No matter what they look like ;O)