Thankfulness, a Recipe of Love

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This week I feel sort of like a preacher. I had one blog all thought out and ready to key in and then a divine voice stopped me saying, ?You need to blog about being thankful.? Well of course I do since next Thursday is Thanksgiving Day.

I often wonder if some people think this is the only day we?re obliged to give thanks? Thanksgiving Day isn?t like your birthday only to be celebrated one day a year. We should be thankful every day. Whether it?s a good one or a bad one. Thanksgiving is a time of reflection, a day to count our blessings.

I could get all ho-hum now and say Thanksgiving just isn?t the same since Mama and Daddy are gone and we can?t go home anymore. But I?m not. I just don?t want to be sad today. I read a friends post on facebook this morning. She was downhearted about the holidays coming up with lots of her loved ones gone. My advice to her was, start a new tradition.

After Mama passed away three years ago and the homeplace wasn?t available for me and my siblings and our clans to assemble, we decided that was no reason to stop joining together as a family to give thanks. So we started a new tradition. We now meet in a little cabin that belongs to my sister near The Blue Ridge Parkway. We all cook, laugh, share memories and just plain enjoy ourselves. Is it the same as going home? No. But it?s really okay. We?re making good memories for our children and grandchildren.

Life can be one of two things. A dreary existence filled with regrets and sorrows. Or, it can be a life filled with hope and dreams. It is our choice everyday to either be happy or be sad. Attitude changes lives. Not just our own but those around us. So when life kicks your butt, just look around and you?ll see you?re in pretty good shape. There is always someone who?s getting kicked a little harder than you.

I wish blessings of peace, hope and thankfulness to you and yours. Not just for the season, but for everyday.

Here are a couple of wonderful recipes that you might want to share with your loved ones during the holidays. My Aunt Lafayette loved to bake. She always had a desert ready to serve company. Here are two of her favorites.

Pecan Pie

(This makes 3 regular crust pies.)

6 eggs

1 1/3 cups sugar

2/3 cup soft butter (Land of Lakes sweet cream is what she used.)

1 bottle, 16 ounce green label Karo Syrup

2 cups pecans, chopped in small pieces. (Not fine.)

Dash of salt

3 regular size Pet Ritz, frozen pie crusts

Beat eggs, sugar, salt and butter. (Do not over beat.) Add syrup then pecans. Beat as you pour in pie shells to keep pecans stirred equally in all pies.

Bake at 350 degrees to 40 to 50 minutes.

Serve with butter pecan ice cream or plain.

Pineapple Carrot Cake

This moist cake with cream cheese frosting is the best I?ve ever eaten. It?s so simple because it uses jars of carrot baby food.

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 cups sugar

2 teaspoons baking soda

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1-teaspoon salt

1-1/2 cups vegetable oil

4 eggs

2 jars (6 ounce each) carrot baby food

1 can (8 ounces) crushed pineapple, drained

1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)


1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened

1-teaspoon vanilla extract

3-3/4 cups confectioners? sugar

Additional chopped walnuts or pecans for topping.

In a mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Add the oil, eggs and baby food, mix on low speed until well blended. Stir in pineapple and nuts. Pour into two greased and floured 9-inch round baking pans. (I use three.) Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.

For frosting, in a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and butter until smooth. Beat in vanilla and confectioners sugar until mixture reaches spreading consistency. Spread between layers and over top and sides of cake. Garnish with nuts if desired. Store in the refrigerator. Yield 12 servings.

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