Saturday, December 04, 2010

Monthly Recipes

My late mother-in-law, whom we called "Sudie," loved Christmas and
always fixed a wide variety of family recipes that my husband and
father-in-law looked forward to all year. She passed away in 2005 and we still miss her very much, especially during the holiday she loved best. I thought I'd share some of her recipes.

Appetizer: Garlic Cheese Roll

1 lb. sharp yellow cheese (cheddar) grated fine
1 small package cream cheese
1 c. chopped nuts (I believe she always used pecans, since we are in Texas!)
1 pod or more (to taste) garlic, minced fine
Paprika and chili powder

Mix cheese & cream cheese together until smooth and evenly blended; add garlic and blend again. Add nuts. You may then need to refrigerate depending on the temperature of your ingredients and kitchen. On waxed paper, roll mixture into one or more "logs" and even out the ends. Roll log(s) in a mixture of paprika and chili powder. (I believe she used more paprika than chili powder. I'm sure my daughter would recommend smoked paprika.) Roll the log up in waxed paper until ready to serve with crackers.

Sudie would always make two or three extra cheese rolls and send them home with my husband, who would slice them and eat with crackers for a snack or a meal, if I was busy.

Wild Rice Dressing

In a large bowl, mix:1 3/4 c. prepared (cooked) wild rice (Save 1 c. of water from cooking rice.)Note: This is NOT the wild rice mix, but 100% wild rice.
1 large onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
3/4 c. diced celery
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. dried sage
2 T. oil
1 slightly beaten egg
To this mixture add:
1 can Cream of Mushroom soup
1 c. water kept from cooking rice
Pour mixture into one large (about 11 x 17) or two small (about 8 x 8) shallow dishes and bake at 375 degrees until liquid is absorbed and dressing firms up a little. It will not be "solid" like
cornbread dressing. The recipe doesn't specify how long to bake it and I can't recall, but I would plan about 40 - 45 minutes.

I hope you have a wonderful holiday season!

Thursday, December 02, 2010


CONGRATULATIONS MJFredrick! You’re the November winner. To receive your free autographed books please contact Rebecca Winters and Laura Bradford through their Web sites.

To enter the contest simply leave a blog comment and your name will go into the drawing. Simple and painless. And FREE BOOKS.

So check back often and be sure to leave a comment. Good luck!

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Do You Have a Great Stuffing Recipe?

For years, my husband has made a fabulous stuffing every Thanksgiving and Christmas. It involved hot sausage and raisins and plenty of delicious taste … and fat.

He’s now on a healthy eating plan, plus we have some dear ones who don’t eat pork. For Thanksgiving, he tried out a new recipe involving oranges, which sounded great at the recipe level but turned out a bit sour. He added currants and raisins and some sugar, which brought it up to the level of palatable, but it fell short of his standards.

Do you have a great stuffing recipe that you can vouch for? Especially one that’s moderate to low in fat and doesn’t involve pork? I would love to have it, and I’ll share as many as I have space for with readers next month (assuming I receive some – hope hope!). Rather than post these, since they might run long and I might miss them, please email me at I hope we can find one for my husband to make this month for the holidays!

Meanwhile, I hope you’ll enjoy my December release, The Holiday Triplets. It’s book three of my Safe Harbor Medical series, but it stands alone, so you don’t need to have read the previous two (The Would-Be Mommy and His Hired Baby). There’s a fourth entry coming up in February, Officer Daddy.

Wishing you a great holiday season and a happy and healthy New Year, and I’ll look forward to hearing from you!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Checkin' His List

My oldest was born just three days after Christmas which meant she was just shy of one when her first holiday season came around. Aside from the traditional shape sorter, chubby blocks, and fabric dolls that made perfect gifts for that age, books made it into her stocking and under the tree, too.

The same held true for my youngest who was just shy of three months when her first Christmas rolled around. Granted, she hadn't even reached the book-chewing stage, but still she got books. Lots and lots of books.

Books meant cuddle time.
Books meant quiet time.
Books meant the kind of special one-on-one time with each girl that I will forever hold in a special place in my heart.

Fast forward fifteen years with the one, and twelve years with the other and the one staple under the tree each year is books. Sure, they represent slightly different things at this point in their lives, but they are no less special now than they were then.

Books offer an escape.
Books offer a place to learn.
Books offer a chance to slow things down and regroup.

And giving books gives me an excuse to roam around in the bookstore for hours on end...

Ah yes, the truth is out (don't tell anyone, okay?). :)

So how about you? Do you give books for the holidays?


P.S. I'm holding a sort of holiday contest on my alter ego's website. Each week, from now until Christmas, my blog readers have a chance to win a book for their best friend. Curious? Visit