Christmas Scenes on the Avenue (St. Charles, that is)

Submitted by Cindy

I was walking the dog yesterday when I came across Santa Claus lying in the middle of St. Charles Avenue.  This wasn’t a mall Santa with too many toddies after a stressful day of wishes, but a twenty foot tall fiberglass guy!  He was accompanied by workers from a company that produces Mardi Gras parades and extravaganzas.  A small crowd watched in fascination as a large crane hoisted Santa over the iron fence, skillfully dodging overhanging oak branches.  How I wish I’d had the camera with me!  But I went back to capture him welcoming passersby in front of his beautiful temporary home.

Loyola and Tulane Universities are several blocks away.  The nativity scene in Loyola’s quadrangle facing the avenue has been a Christmas fixture since I was a child.  It was very serene this morning compared to last week when the school brought in 20 tons of ice for the enjoyment of neighborhood children.  As you might imagine, snow is a rarity in New Orleans and it was packed.  I managed to get a few shots before some snowballs to the face told me it was time to go.

This morning was the annual carol service at St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church, a much anticipated event.  The choir accompanied by the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra performed Hodie, a Christmas cantata by Ralph Vaughan Williams.  It was a soothing hour, especially in light of the country’s recent tragedy.  (Wish I could share it with you, but we have a no electronics policy during services.)  There was another attraction for the kids and kids at heart – my friend Geoff set up his model train set in the fellowship hall.  You can watch his trains in motion circling through their Christmas Village.  How many Saints trains (I’m talking football rather than pious types) have you seen?

All this happening within a couple of blocks – it’s why we love New Orleans!

Click pictures to enlarge

Wreaths and Garlands and Doors . . . Oh My!

Submitted by Christi

Recently, my husband and I took a walk down State Street here in New Orleans. It is a lovely tree lined street with beautiful homes and gardens. Now, at Christmas time, it takes on a whole new and beautiful look. I took lots of pictures and today, I want to share the doors with their festive wreaths and garlands and bows. Lots of eye candy here. Another reason to love New Orleans! Oh, and once you have seen all the pics, don’t forget to check out the toffee recipe at the bottom.

Click on any picture to enlarge.

Today’s Lagniappe: Christmas Toffee
Lagniappe (pronounced lan-yap) = a little something extra

Making candy around the holidays is a fun tradition, but sometimes, you just don’t have a lot of time available for all that is involved. This toffee, made with saltines is a great time saver that tastes great and is easy.


saltine crackers (enough to line a 13 x 18 sheet pan)
2 sticks of butter
1 cup of brown sugar (I used light but use whatever you have)
1 tsp. vanilla
1 12 oz. package of semi-sweet chocolate chips (you can use milk chocolate if you prefer)
toasted nuts (I used slivered almonds but chopped pecans or walnuts would be great too)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line a sheet pan with aluminum foil and spray it generously with non-stick cooking spray (do not skip this step – trust me). Place saltine crackers in the pan with the salt side up – like this:

Christmas toffee

Melt the butter and brown sugar over medium high heat, stirring constantly. Bring to a boil. Let the butter and sugar mixture boil for 3 minutes (stirring to make sure it doesn’t stick on the bottom). Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla.

Pour the butter/sugar mixture over the crackers (be careful, it is very hot). Place the sheet pan in the oven and bake the toffee for 5 minutes. Remove the sheet pan from the oven.

Sprinkle chocolate chips over the top of the hot toffee mixture. The chocolate will melt. Once the chocolate has melted, spread it to cover the top of the toffee. Sprinkle the nuts on top of the toffee.

Christmas toffee

Let cool and then you can put it in the refrigerator to continue setting up. Once the toffee has set up, remove it from the pan with the foil lining. Either cut it up into small toffee pieces (as I do) or break it up. This is very rich so you will want small pieces.

Sorry, I forgot to get a “beauty shot” – guess I’ll have to make some more 🙂

Metamorphosis Monday

Metamorphosis Monday with Between Naps on the Porch


Christmas in the Country

Submitted by Cindy

My friends Jimmy and David have a fantastic second home an hour north of New Orleans in rural St. Tammany Parish.  Over twenty years they have transformed a barren piece of land into an estate with a fantastic house, lake, gardens, a greenhouse, and a commercial nursery.  The latest addition – just in time for the Christmas season – is a chapel.

We were honored to attend their annual Christmas Open House last weekend.   I’m only showing you inside views today, but we’ll go back in the spring when the gardens are in full bloom.   As always, the home was beautifully decorated, with holiday color in every room.

Click to enlarge.

You can’t have a party in New Orleans without food, and David is a fantastic cook.  The old saying “you eat first with your eyes” is especially true here – just look at the artistic displays.  I wish that I had such attention to detail!  If  you’re getting hungry, check out the recipe for Blue Cheese Pine Cones below.

Click to enlarge.

Blue Cheese Pine Cones

2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened

1-1/4 cups processed cheese sauce

1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled blue cheese

1/4 cup chopped green onions

1 tablespoon diced pimientos

1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1-1/2 cups unblanched almonds, toasted

In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, cheese sauce and blue cheese until smooth. Stir in the onions, pimientos and Worcestershire sauce. Cover and refrigerate until firm. On a serving platter, form cheese spread into a pine cone shape. Beginning at the narrow end, arrange almonds in rows.  Serve with crackers. 

Tablescape Thursday with Between Naps on the Porch

with Between Naps on the Porch


Music in the Air

Submitted by Christi

In New Orleans, there is never a shortage of great music to enjoy and that is especially the case at Christmas time. There are many places to enjoy free concerts by great musicians and some you can join in creating the music yourself. One of the more unusual opportunities to join in is presented by Trinity Church’s Messiah Sing-Along.

Once upon a time, I enjoyed being part of different choral groups that performed Handel’s Messiah so this event was very appealing to me. The Christmas portion of the Messiah was performed and the audience could join in with the magnificent Trinity choir on the choruses. How fun is that? I admit, I ended up listening more than singing – can’t really hit the high notes anymore (not that I ever could hit them that well). Also, I just enjoyed hearing the beautiful voices. It was a wonderful event. Here are a couple of the highlights (the choir is located back by the organ pipes that you can see on the left side):

For Unto Us A Child Is Born:


The Hallelujah Chorus

Hope you enjoyed that as much as I did! Merry Christmas!



Ornaments, New Orleans Style

Submitted by Cindy

Decorating our Christmas tree is like a walk down memory lane.  We phased out the shiny glass balls many years ago. Each of our ornaments is unique, and most have a story behind them.

We have a sterling “Our First Christmas”, but what I really remember from that year is the cute ornaments that Shell was giving away with a fill-up.  With a giant tree sitting in our almost bare den, we topped off the tank a lot.  My father adored the holidays.  One of his favorite places to shop was a Christmas store in Highlands, N.C., where he would buy me a special ornament during each summer’s vacation.  My dear aunt Jocelyn always attached an ornament to my gift, with the year hand painted on it.  And so it goes …..people, places, and events from the past.

A nine foot tree can hold plenty of ornaments, so I’m only going to show you a few that depict New Orleans.  Bear with me – some will take a bit of explanation so you can appreciate them.

A local jewelry store occasionally issues ornaments commemorating various Mardi Gras organizations.  The first ornament below is a detailed replica of the 1893 Rex king’s float, leading off a parade with the theme “Fantasies”.    The next honors the Elves of Oberon, an organization dating from 1895.  Drawing from their Midsummer Night’s Dream imagery, Puck (assistant to Oberon, the King of Fairyland) is poised to introduce his pranks at the krewe’s ball.  The third depicts the invitation to Rex’s ball of 1882, where the robes of the “Butterfly King” unfold to reveal the details of its reception themed “Pursuit of Pleasure”.  Lots more about all this when we get closer to Carnival!

The rest are a bit easier to comprehend.  The fleur de lis has long been a symbol of New Orleans, and the jester is a popular Mardi Gras image.  Christi told you all about our streetcar a while back.  The little house reminded a friend of my first home, a peach colored shotgun cottage, a prevalent architectural form in this city.  The other building ornament commemorates the local Preservation Resource Center’s first renovation, which began the transformation of skid row into a desirable neighborhood.  And I had to slip in a reference to my alma mater.

Enough talk!  Enjoy the pictures.

Click pictures to enlarge.

More Christmas Decorations

Submitted by Cindy

More Christmas Decorations

You’ve seen Christi’s decorations, and now it’s my turn!

I’m a fairly spontaneous decorator, but I’ve got a couple of guiding principles.  First, I love fresh greenery.  We had a tradition when I was little – “getting the pine”.  We’d go out to the woods and my father would chop down a pine tree or two, using the boughs to decorate the house.  It smelled so great!  We now buy garlands to support a local school’s fundraising efforts.  I make the rounds of tree selling operations in the area, gathering trimmings to use in vases and such.  There are also great things in the yard, alas, no holly berries this year.  Materials here courtesy of Lowe’s, my front hedge, and a neighbor’s kumquat bush.

Second, I believe in recycling.  That’s a polite way to say that I can’t resist rooting through people’s trash when the decorations start coming down.  I also save pics from flower arrangements, nifty ribbon, or whatever might have potential.  I redid our tired old wreath that I couldn’t bring myself to pitch because it came from a friend’s shop that’s no longer business.   My neighbor tossed out a professionally created garland, lights, ornaments, beads, and all.  It lives on!


And finally, sentimentality wins out over sophistication any day.  Some objects appear year after year because they have become our traditions.  Others are remembrances of childhood, like the set of mice that my husband and his mother bought at an after Christmas sale.  Thirty-two cents each.  It just wouldn’t be Christmas without them!

Have you noticed that there are no pictures of the tree?  That’s coming next time.

Click to enlarge

Metamorphosis Monday

Metamorphosis Monday with Between Naps on the Porch

Christmas in New Orleans

Submitted by Christi

New Orleans is a great place to visit and live anytime but I think it is just especially magical at Christmas time. There is so much to enjoy! In addition to the beautiful Christmas decorations, there are the Reveillon dinners, the caroling at Jackson Square and in Palmer Park and . . . well, obviously, this is going to take a few posts. Yesterday, I showed you a little about what is going on here in my home, specifically, the fireplace mantel. Today, we’ll step outside and see the porch and a bit more of the house.

Let’s start out on the porch.

Christmas in New Orleans

Keeping it simple with a few bows, some garland, and of course some lights.

Christmas in New Orleans

The weather has been lovely, and that calls for some porch sittin’, don’t you think?

click on any picture to enlarge:

Before we go inside, let’s look around a little more outside.

Christmas Gate

The front gate is decorated for Christmas.



And, of course, we don’t want to forget the Reason for the Season!

Now, come on in and I’ll show you a couple of rooms.

click for complete pictures and to enlarge

Now, I think it is time to get out in the city and see what is going on! I hope you’ll join me to see some more of Christmas in New Orleans.

Christi’s Lagniappe: Louisiana Christmas Strawberries
Lagniappe (pronounced lan-yap)= a little something extra

Louisiana early crop strawberries are already coming in! They are beautiful and delicious. I just cleaned them, dipped them in melted white chocolate, then rolled them in green decorator sugar. Pretty and delicious!

Louisiana Christmas Strawberries

Metamorphosis Monday

Metamorphosis Monday with Between Naps on the Porch

New Orleans Christmas Mantel

Submitted by Christi

Glad you could come and join us here in New Orleans where we are gearing up for tons of fun in the city and plenty here at home as well. Lots of posts coming up to tell you about the caroling, the dinners, the decorating, and  . . . well, let’s just say it is going to take a few posts to cover Christmas in New Orleans.

We’ll start here at home with the mantel. In New Orleans, it doesn’t get cold enough very often for a fire. Maybe, that is why the fireplace in my home is not functional. However, I do think I can get by with candles in the fireplace. After all, during Hurricane Isaac, some water (mixed with soot) did actually spatter down the chimney! 🙂

Well, hurricane season is over. It is now time for some Christmas celebrating!

Christmas Mantel

Ignore that lady in the mirror LOL!

I can’t pass up the opportunity to hang Christmas stockings on the mantel. It is only my husband and me and our dog and cat, but still – can’t let that go to waste!

Here is the Christmas Mantel Gallery:

Tomorrow, we’ll explore some more of the house and then we’ll head out to see the beautiful city of New Orleans celebrating Christmas. There will be lots of decorating, recipes and events. I hope you will come back and join us again!


The Lettered Cottage
Metamorphosis Monday

Metamorphosis Monday with Between Naps on the Porch


Christmas Around the House

Submitted by Christi

Well, the decorating is going really slow this year. We’ve been passing around the pre-Christmas crud around here the last couple of weeks. We are planning on being back to 100% this coming weekend! For now, I’ll post what we’ve got done and will try to post more once our ailing bodies have recovered. First stop, the dining table for a Christmas tablescape:








Next stop, the Christmas tree. So glad we got this up before the ailments began. It has been nice to enjoy the tree while we have been stuck at home.

Christmas Tree

I’ll get some more shots of the tree tomorrow (when I predict I’ll be back to at least 90%) and add them to the post.

Then there is the nativity, which I showed you earlier this week. We still have not put ours together yet. The pieces are still awaiting us on the back porch. I just hope ours looks even half as nice as Mama’s.


Still working on the fireplace. Somehow the lights are not cooperating as I would like.

Christmas Fireplace

A little touch of Christmas in the kitchen:

Kitchen Wreath

I like to hang the wreath above the kitchen sink. It has some of my favorite ornaments on it along with some old silver. Here is my Christmas piggy chef:

Kitchen Christmas

A little Christmas cheer on the cabinets:

Christmas Cabinets

Stockings for the pets (we have no children so we make do):

Bailey stockin

Cali Stockin

Our Christmas decorations are still a work in progress. Hopefully a lot more progress this weekend!

In the meantime, I promised the Christmas fruitcake story. As you may remember, I posted a fruitcake recipe earlier this week. Well, that fruitcake has been around for a long, long time. My Mama remembers that My Daddy’s father’s (my Grandpa’s) bookkeeper, who was named Jelly had a wife who would always make this fruitcake. Now, this was before my Mama and Daddy married, so that was over 50 years ago. My grandmother got the recipe and our family has been making it ever since. My mother and grandmother just didn’t soak it in the sherry. If you missed the recipe, just go back one post and check it out.

For tonight, we’ll stick with something easier.

Today’s Lagniappe:  Chocolate Coffee
This sounds like a yummy recipe for after a fun time in the snow or just for some Christmas Cheer.

4 heaping teaspoons of cocoa mix
1 scant teaspoon of instant coffee mix

Makes one serving.

Okay, hope everyone is having lots of holiday fun (without any of this yucky stuff). Lots of parties going on! Here are the ones I am linking to!

Tablescape Thursday with Between Naps on the Porch

with Between Naps on the Porch

Holiday Home

Hooked on Houses

Southern Fireside

Submitted by Christi

It is still pretty cool here today. Glad to have a fire in the fireplace. Definitely time to stay in and have a cozy supper by the fire for today’s edition of Tablescape Thursday.


I started with a small table in front of the fire. So glad I got a red tablecloth. It has had so many great uses.

I added my gold, fluted chargers.


Then, I added my Mikasa Ribbon and Holly china.


Etched glass goblets with long stems in red.


Gold flatware and a candle complete the scene.


A cozy fireside supper on a cold evening.


But it is nice and warm in here.


The decorating blitz around here is coming up this weekend. Check back for new photos and ideas!

Today’s Lagniappe: Caramelized Onion Potato Gratin
Something warm and comforting to have on a cool day from Southern Living.

* 1 1/4  cups  soft, fresh breadcrumbs
* 1/4  cup  chopped fresh parsley
* 3  tablespoons  grated Parmesan cheese
* 2  teaspoons  lemon zest
* 3  tablespoons  butter
* 2  large sweet onions, halved and thinly sliced
* 3  garlic cloves, minced
* 3  tablespoons  all-purpose flour
* 3 1/2  cups  milk
* 1 3/4  teaspoons  salt
* 1 1/2  teaspoons  dried Italian seasoning
* 1/8  teaspoon  ground red pepper
* 1  (8-oz.) package shredded Italian six-cheese blend
* 3  pounds  baking potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced


1. Preheat oven to 375°. Combine first 4 ingredients in a small bowl.

2. Melt butter in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat; add onion, and cook, stirring often, 15 minutes or until onions are caramel colored; add garlic, and cook 1 minute.

3. Stir in flour, and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk and next 3 ingredients. Cook, whisking often, 8 to 9 minutes or until mixture thickens. Remove from heat; whisk in cheese until melted and smooth.

4. Layer half of potatoes in a lightly greased 13- x 9-inch baking dish; pour 2 cups sauce over potatoes in dish. Repeat layers once.

5. Bake, uncovered, at 375° for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until golden brown and potatoes are fork tender, topping with breadcrumb mixture during last 15 minutes of baking. Remove from oven, and let stand 10 minutes.

Lightened Potato-Caramelized Onion Gratin: Substitute 1% low-fat milk for whole milk, decrease butter to 1 1/2 Tbsp., and increase flour to 1/4 cup. Proceed with recipe as directed.

Southern Christmas Beginnings

Submitted by Christi

It turned sharply colder here today. Time for the first fire of the season! Our big Christmas decorating blitz will be this upcoming weekend. I have a pretty ambitious project going on that I hope to show you next Monday. In the meantime, our fireplace and my mother’s fireplace (she has a mantle, I don’t).

Christi's Christmas Fireplace

I love the lights in the darkening room with the warm fire.

Christi's Christmas Fireplace

Decorated with ribons and bulbs and sparkling white lights.

Of course, it is going to warm back up tomorrow, but for today, a fire in the fireplace and festive decorations were just the ticket!

Now on to Mama’s.

Mama's Christmas Mantel

Mama's Christmas Mantel

Mama's Christmas Mantel

Pretty, tradtional colors

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

The Lettered Cottage
Today’s Lagniappe:  Cheery Cheese Spread
A yummy little snack for sittin’ around the fire.
* 1 container (16 ounces) cheddar cheese spread, softened
* 2 packages (one 8 ounces, one 3 ounces) cream cheese, softened
* 3 tablespoons butter, softened
* 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
* 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
* Paprika
* Snipped fresh parsley
* Assorted crackers


* In a medium bowl, combine cheese spread, cream cheese, butter, Worcestershire sauce and garlic powder. Blend thoroughly. Chill at least 3 hours or overnight. Sprinkle with paprika and parsley. Serve with crackers.

Southern Merry Christmas!

Submitted by Christi

Christmas day, what a blessing! It is snowing heavily where I am and I am so thankful to be safely inside. Please remember to pray for those who may still be on the road.


Luke 2: 1 – 20

1And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.

2(And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)

3And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.

4And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)

5To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.

6And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.

7And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

8And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.

9And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

10And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

11For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

12And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

13And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

14Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

15And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.

16And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.

17And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.

18And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.

19But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.

20And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

Here are some pictures from the Christmas Eve table for Tablescape Thursday (since these pics didn’t make it earlier)



And, the scene outside on Christmas eve:


Wishing you peace and goodwill in your heart and home and a very Merry Christmas!

Today’s Lagniappe: Eggnog French Toast
Something yummy for Christmas morning and for Foodie Friday with Gollum!

Southern Christmas Eve at Mama’s

Submitted by Christi

Christmas eve at Mama’s house is special. We’ve set the table and will have a lot of fun laughing and sharing the special season of Christmas and honor the birth of our Saviour, Jesus Christ!

I’ve got some technical issues on Mama’s computer (which being her techie daughter, I get to address tomorrow) so I’m posting some past pics that she took from a dinner they hosted as well as some from my home.  Once I get some of these technical taken care of, I’ll post more!

Merry Christmas!


What mansion would that be? The Palace on the Prairie, the Marland Mansion in Ponca City Oklahoma. My mother and her husband, Chester hosted a party for all the church staff in the Kay Baptist Association at the Marland Mansion this week. Chester is the Director of Missions for the association. They have had this event at other places before but the past few years have been at this beautiful landmark.

According to the Marland Mansion website:

The dream of oil baron E.W. Marland was to live in a palace. This magnificent mansion reflects the elegance of the affluent days of the oilman, who lived lavishly and entertained in the same style.

The Marland Mansion

The Marland Mansion

This National Historic Landmark took three years to construct, 1925 to 1928. The mansion is 78 feet wide and 184 feet long, and contains 43,561 square feet distributed over four levels. There are 55 rooms, including 10 bedrooms, 12 bathrooms, 7 fireplaces, and 3 kitchens. It takes 861 light bulbs to light the mansion.

Come with me to the bottom of the Grand Staircase

Grand Staircase

Grand Staircase

There were just over 50 guest. The guests were entertained by a very talented pianist (I’ll tell you more about him before Christmas). They dined on delicious Mexican food and sang along to the Christmas Carols.

Mama took these pictures the morning of the dinner.

Isnt' it beautiful?

Isnt' it beautiful?



The globes on tables held green and red pillar candles and were wreathed with holly. There are also songsheets on the tables for the carol-along. The napkins (which she didn’t send me a close up of) were decorated with poinsettias.

Reports tell me that a fun time was had by all. You can read more about the Marland Mansion and see more pictures on their website.

Okay, now back to my humble abode 🙂

We are having potato soup and cornbread tonight and it will be serve yourself in the kitchen!


Looks like the decorating fairy has visited my kitchen cabinets:


Here is another peek at my Swarovski Santa and sleigh:


Another look at the fireplace:



P. S. Come join us at my new Facebook page for A Southern Life. Either follow the link on the left of search for “A Southern Life” on Facebook!

Today’s Lagniappe:  Chocolate Coffee
This sounds like a yummy recipe for after a fun time in the snow (which it looks like we will have this Christmas eve!). From

4 heaping teaspoons of cocoa mix
1 scant teaspoon of instant coffee mix

Makes one serving.

Southern Tour of Christmas Lights

Submitted by Christi

I love going out in the cold December nights to drive around and look at Christmas lights. Here are a few pics I snapped this past week:




When we got home from checking out the lights it was such a clear and beautiful night that I decided to get a picture of the stars. After I downloaded the picture, I used the auto-tone option on photoshop and it turned out like this:


I thought that was so spectacular. You can just see the tops of the trees  in the bottom of the picture. They are somewhat illuminated by a street light.

Merry Christmas eve, eve, eve!

A little outdoor red for Outdoor Wednesday with A Southern Daydreamer and Rednesday! with It’s a Very Cherry.

Today’s Lagniappe: The Best Party Mix – Ever!
My mom used to make this party mix when we were growing up. It is spicy and delicious. I think I could actually live on it (for a while anyway). You’ll never find this version in a bag at the grocery store!

1 box rice chex
1 box wheat chex
1 box corn chex
1 large bag pretzel sticks
1 box cherrios
1 lb. pecans
1 lb. cashews

1 stick of butter, melted
1 cup cooking oil
3 tablespoons tobasco
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon garlic salt
1 tablespoon celery salt
1 tablespoon onion powder

This makes a whole lot, so you will need large pans for this.

Pour all of the chex cereals, pretzels, cherrios and nuts in a very large mixing bowl (may take more than one) Mix them up and pour them into shallow pans Mix, melted butter, oil, tobasco and all the spices together. Pour the butter mixture evenly over the cereal mixture and stir to coat.

Cook 1-1/2 hours at 250 stirring every 15 to 20 minutes.

Southern Christmas Tree

Submitted by Christi

Oh, Christmas Tree
Oh, Christmas Tree
How lovely are thy branches




For unto us a child is born,
unto us a son is given:
and the government shall be upon his shoulder:
and his name shall be called
The mighty God,
The everlasting Father,
The Prince of Peace.


Merry Christmas to all! Check out today’s lagniappe for never fail divinity.




Deck the Halls with Thoughts from Over the Rainbow

Home for the Holidays

Balancing Beauty and Bedlam’s Tasty Tuesday

Blessed with Grace’s Tempt My Tummy Tuesday

The Gypsy’s Corner’s Three or More Tuesday

Today’s Lagniappe:  Never Fail Divinity
I had a little trouble with my divinity this past weekend. My wonderful friend from high school Tamara Gouge Ketter sent me her recipe for Never Fail Divinity. Tamara says, “This recipe was contributed to THE NINETIES COOKBOOK by the Garvin County, Oklahoma Extension homemakers by May Lacy.  I made this for my dad who was a divinity aficionado and he loved it.” Thanks so much Tamara – no more trying to beat egg whites in the Southern humidity!

1 1/2 cups sugar                   1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup water                        1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 one pint jar marshmallow creme

Combine sugar, water and salt in saucepan.  Cook to 250 degrees on candy thermometer, hard ball stage.  Place marshmallow creme in large mixer bowl.  Add hot syrup gradually, beating consistently until soft peaks form.  Fold in pecans and vanilla. ( If it still seems too soft I had a little powdered sugar, maybe a teaspoonful.)  Drop by spoonfuls onto waxed paper.  Let stand until firm.  Yield:  20 servings.