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Tag Archives: Family

Thanksgiving, Texas Girl Style

20 Nov

When we lived in Texas and our kids were little, Thanksgiving was a time of making extra pies for neighbors and visiting Mom-Mom’s house with a few key items we had been asked to bring. Years went by with the kids and grandparents getting older and more of the cooking, along with the ‘when and where’ of Thanksgiving dinner, became my responsibility. It was a gradual change, which I didn’t mind at all, because I love cooking and sharing a meal with our loved ones and friends we consider family.

When Thanksgiving Day finally came, our friends always made it easier with combined dinners where all the cooking didn’t fall on one person; and fried turkeys gave the men something to do while holding a cold beer and trying not to set the house on fire with the hot oil (some good memories were made around that turkey fryer). Add a few state moves over the last five years for us, and our Thanksgiving celebrations have become a quiet day of football with our little family while enjoying a very casual menu. We do miss our big gathering of family and friends, but we usually see everyone around Christmas when they make the trek from Texas to visit us and play in the snow.

For this Texas girl, my Thanksgiving menu is casual and easy. It is about having a collection of food available that will allows us to nibble all day while watching football and without the burden of anyone spending too much time in the kitchen. At the beginning of the week, homemade pies in canning jars will be mailed back home so we can share a little homemade goodness with those we love. And for my little family now located up north and our new friends who will be joining us on Thanksgiving Day, my menu combines a Texas flavor with a little bit of traditional Thanksgiving. Each recipe will be showcased here, and I will also be available Wednesday from noon to 5pm MST, Thursday from 8am to 2pm MST, via TwitterFacebook or Skype for last minute ideas, tips and tricks!

Food is Love…WH

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Cook with your Kids!

16 Nov

We are bubbling up with excitement about our new initiative, Cook with your Kids!  We know that you are busy.  Between full-time careers, soccer games, ballet recitals, parent teacher conferences, church, neighborhood watch meetings… and that fella you married… how DO you find the time to cook?  We also understand that sometimes it’s scary.  All those ingredients, the tools, the timing… how does one do it? 😉

We’re kind of kidding… because we DO know it gets busy, and we also understand that it is SO much more convenient to pop something in microwave or order takeout; however, when you consider what you are putting in those sweet little bodies, we know there are better options.  We want to empower you to get in the kitchen with your kids!  My kids love cooking and baking with me.  It’s such a great opportunity to talk with your kids, learn about their day and learn something together.  Children also explore more food options when they own what they’ve made.  All of a sudden ingredients like basil and pine nuts are fun and delicious.  Yes, really…Wendy and I both have seen this with our own kids.  My girls were watching me bake bread last night while my seven-year-old read to my youngest… sisters bonding in the kitchen. It doesn’t get any better.

So here’s the plan…  We are going to post a new recipe tagged Cook with your Kids!, along with a ‘how to’ video every few days.  From homemade mac and cheese to chocolate cake from scratch… we’ve got you covered.  We would love to see a photo of you, with your kids, in the kitchen, with your final product!  Each week we will choose one family from the entries and we’ll ship off a gift basket of our new JW Food & Design Signature Foods and Gifts.  You can email your photo(s) to cookwithyourkids@jwfoodanddesign.com.  The logo above is printable as a color sheet for the kids to personalize – include it in your photo!  Wendy and I can’t wait to see what y’all discover in the kitchen!  Have fun, and remember that every measurement and ingredient is a chance to share something new with the little ones you love so much.

Food is love! ~ JB

Make Thanksgiving Pretty!

13 Nov

I love decorating for the holidays.  Thanksgiving and its rich color wheel make me so happy… it’s a great time to pull out the china, your best linens, the family crystal and dazzle your guests.  This year, everyone in my house will be gone Thanksgiving week, so we put up our Christmas tree on the 6th {Gasp!} and I will not apologize for it.  That being said, if you’re home this Thanksgiving, give it its due attention. Here’s some fab and fun ideas that won’t break the bank!

I think that every holiday is an opportunity to show your family and friends how talented and clever you are.  Candied apples as dessert or sweet M&M gifts are lovely ways to offer an unexpected sweet treat.  A centerpiece of family members {photos} who aren’t able to join you is a beautiful way to include them as well as promote conversation.  Candles are a staple, and always a sure fire {no pun intended} way to warm a tablescape.  Make it beautiful & delicious and inspire your guests!

Food is love!

JB

Thanksgiving, part 1

2 Nov

I’ve been thinking about all the Thanksgivings of my past, and how they’re all so different!  Some have been full of family, football, women in the kitchen and lots of kid’s tables and others have been spent on beaches, with pool boys bringing drinks and gorgeous dinners served to me.  I’ve also taken my kids to explore for this holiday break, one of my favorites was a trip that my oldest son and I took to NYC years ago… we did the Macy’s Parade, Phantom of the Opera, FAO Schwartz, etc… and it began his love affair with this great city.

This year I’ll be spending the holiday with friends, my older sister, niece & nephew.  We will be sharing family recipes, making memories and relaxing together for a few much needed days off.  I’m road-tripping through the west, putting my feet in the sand in SoCal and playing in the desert of Nevada.  A week of calm and quiet, good food and people I love… which will prepare me for Christmas, which is an entirely different post that you will get in a few weeks.  🙂

We want to know how you’re spending YOUR Thanksgiving… what traditions you enjoy, if you travel or everyone comes to you, and the burning question… when do you put up your Christmas tree?  We’re open to debate over the turkey as well… fried or baked?  I’ll just say this about that… I’m from a family that fries everything but their children but I like mine wrapped in bacon and baked long and slow.  We look forward to your stories, treasures and feedback!

Food is love! ~ JB