I’m sure your family has certain holiday foods that you look forward to enjoying each year. Not only to taste, but to anticipate, prepare, smell…. oh, the season of cozy warmth, deep spices, and quality family time! For us, it would be hard to imagine a holiday spread without our Sweet Potato Souffle from our family cookbook, Tasty Traditions. In fact, we almost crossed it off the menu this year for various reasons, but nooooo. It is now in the freezer just waiting to jump into the oven on the Big Day of Gratitude (it is also anticipating being gobbled up with delight, just like the turkey).
We hope you are all enjoying the days that are passing so quickly and savoring every delicious moment to the fullest. There truly is much for which to be thankful!
These fun and adorable treats are perfect for building relationships with the small people in your life. Watch smiles form and grow as you build your turkeys with your children, siblings, nieces & nephews, or little friends. And besides, who doesn’t like to have miniature turkeys around for the week of Thanksgiving?
You will need:
Oreo cookies – 1 per turkey
Large marshmallows – 1/2 per turkey
Candy Corn – five per turkey, plus a few extra
Small amount of frosting
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon milk
Mix all ingredients to make frosting.
Assemble your birds:
Spread a little frosting onto a cookie.
Press half of a marshmallow (cut around the middle “east/west” fashion) onto the cookie, NOT centered.
Place 5 candy corn evenly spaced above the marshmallow. These are the feathers that make your gobbler’s fan.
Break a tiny piece from one of the extra candy corn, and stick it to the marshmallow with a teeny bit of frosting. This is the gobbler’s beard.
Your bird is complete!
A few weeks ago our family started a diet. This diet didn’t allow for any sugar. Well, this doesn’t work very well with our tradition of getting Blizzards from Dairy Queen when we go to work with Daddy. On the second week of this diet my brother and I got to go with Daddy on his overnight business trip. Were we going to “fall off the wagon” by yielding to the strong temptation of getting the Blizzards that we REALLY wanted, or were we going to choose the right option, and refrain? When we got home someone would ask us what we had eaten, and whether or not we had been “good.” What would we say: that we had not given in, or that we had?
Although we didn’t yield and get the Blizzards that time, it taught me a lesson. It is the same in our spiritual lives. We are frequently tempted by various things in life, but we must remember that we will one day stand before God and give an account of the temptations that we gave in to. How inadequate our earthly excuse will be in comparison to His righteous law.
P.S. We still get them when we aren’t on a diet.
It’s the time of year for spicy, pumpkin sensations, and the girls and I had fun putting these little pies together for a ladies event at our home. The recipe measurements should be done a little ad lib (the pie filling is adapted from our family favorite Paradise Pumpkin Pie from Tasty Traditions, available at NeelyMarketplace.com), but that makes it all the more fun. Enjoy!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees, Fahrenheit. Line 3, 1 dozen, muffin tins with papers.
Prepare the crusts:
2 c. graham cracker crumbs
3 Tbsp. sugar
1/3 c. butter
Combine all three in a food processer and process until well combined, then press about 2 Tbsp. of mixture into each muffin cup. Set aside.
Make the filling:
1 large (29 oz.) can of pumpkin
1/2 c. sugar
1 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. ginger
1/4 t. nutmeg
Dash of salt
1 c. evaporated milk
Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and mix with an electric mixer until thoroughly combined.
Assemble the pies:
Using a large muffin scoop, drop one scoop of pie filling into each crust.
Bake at 350 for 45 minutes, or until the tops are golden and starting to crack slightly.
A few days ago we were on our way to Greenville, SC when we were once again reminded of God’s presence and protection. We were going over a two-lane, curvy, mountain road before sunrise. As we rounded a bend, we suddenly saw two sets of headlights coming straight toward the front of our van, as an oncoming vehicle passed another vehicle. God gave the driver of our van an extremely fast response, and moved us off the road, away from the on-coming vehicle. We were within inches of a head-on collision.
Looking back we realize that God had prepared a place for our van as we swerved off the road; there was a driveway at exactly the right place, and so we were able to swerve onto that instead of into a ditch. There was even a mailbox beside the road that the LORD allowed us to miss.
It is such a comfort to know that God is always with us. “Lo, I am with you always.” Our merciful Savior spared us from what would have ended with disaster.
“The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them.” -Psalm 34:7-
When I’ve been tested,
When I am tried,
God is my Shepherd,
He is my Guide.
He’s my Beloved,
He is my Friend,
Who sticketh closer
Than a brother can.
God is my Refuge,
In Him I Hide
He is my Comfort,
In Him I confide.
His love, amazing,
His boundless mercy:
His riven side,
for you and me,
Shed perfect blood
On Calv’ry’s tree.
O, weak one, trust Him!
He’ll give you strength:
His yoke is easy,
His burden is light.
Christ is sufficient
For all your needs;
Give your life to Christ;
He deserves your praise!
“But He giveth more grace. Wherefore He saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.” James 4:6
“And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work.” II Corinthians 9:8
“…My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” II Corinthians 12:9a
“By the grace of God, I am what I am, and His grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.” I Corinthians 15:10
“He giveth more grace.” Now that’s a promise to bask in for a long time. Let the truth of this simple, yet deeply rich thought saturate your mind.
God gives more grace.
Ponder each word alone.
“He.” Jehovah Jireh, the Great Physician, the Master Who owns the universe. This is the One Who gives more grace.
“Giveth.” There’s no obligation; it’s a gift freely offered.
“More.” As if “no obligation” wasn’t enough, more is added. Abundance. Bounty unmeasured. This is the kind of “giveth more” that our merciful Heavenly Father bestows.
“Grace.” Divine favor. Super-natural enablement.
God gives more grace. And He gives, and gives, and gives again.
“Our fathers trusted in thee: they trusted, and thou didst deliver them. They cried unto thee, and were delivered: they trusted in thee, and were not confounded. For he hath not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; neither hath he hid his face from him; but when he cried unto him, he heard. My praise shall be of thee in the great congregation: I will pay my vows before them that fear him. The meek shall eat and be satisfied: they shall praise the Lord that seek him: your heart shall live for ever.” Psalm 22:4-5, 24-26
My God wants to hear from me. God desires to hear me call upon Him. God allows the unfavorable circumstances so that He can deliver. Am I looking around at all my sins and problems or am I asking my dear Savior for strength, courage, and hope?
“We manifest in our bodies what we harbor in our thoughts.” – Unknown Am I harboring thoughts of doubt, fear, and disobedience, and thus manifesting that in my actions? Even though we are Christians, we are nearly incurable of suspicion toward God.
He wants all of my trust to rest securely in Him. What promises He gives to those who will seek God and trust in Him. Isaiah 30:15 “For thus saith the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel; In returning and rest shall ye be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength: and ye would not.” I don’t want to be one of those who “would not,” but rather one who returns and trusts Christ. God most greatly covets mankind’s trust in Him. I must simply trust and obey.
“Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.” Jeremiah 33:3
“…LORD, it is nothing with thee to help, whether with many, or with them that have no power: help us, O LORD our God; for we rest on thee, and in thy name we go against this multitude. O LORD, thou art our God; let not man prevail against thee.” 2 Chronicles 14:11
“… and I will cause him to draw near, and he shall approach unto me: for who is this that engaged his heart to approach unto me? saith the LORD. And ye shall be my people, and I will be your God.” Jeremiah 30:21b-22