Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Merry Christmas

I’m one of those ‘weird’ people that others don’t understand – yup, you’re right - I start listening to Christmas music in August. Once I started writing a Christmas themed story in December and listened to Christmas music all the way through April, when I finally wrote “The End.” I about drove my hubby crazy when I decided to write two more books (during the summer months) to complete my Santa Series: Santa’s Pretty Lady, Santa’s Secret Gift, Mainland Santa. And, yes of course, you have to have the music while writing. All my e-books are written under my alter-ego Anna Sugg. Read a blurb on my website: http://anna_sugg.coffeecup.com

I have so many wonderful Christmas memories that I have often started out writing a Christmas story, until my characters head into a different direction. That’s what happened when I wrote Secret Past, A Yellow Creek Novel.
My family always went to my grandparents’ farm in Tennessee for Christmas when I was a child. To this day, the memories of so many special Christmases put a smile on my lips. They’re so dear to me since both my grandparents and parents are gone. In Secret Past, my character returns to her grandmother’s farm and while taking a journey through the past, she remembers a fun Christmas Eve spent at the farm. While there a vision of her grandmother appears…and, so, my story is off and running in a different direction. But, those Christmas feelings are still living within me to this day.

When visiting my family in Tennessee in 1988, my sister, Sherry, gave me a recipe that I thought would make the best holiday cake ever. Now, years later, I’m making the same cake for our Christmas dinner dessert. We make traditions sometimes that can last a lifetime. I would like to share my Christmas recipe with you…

Sherry's Carrot Cake
2 cups of sugar
1 ¼ cups of vegetable oil
4 eggs
2 ½ cups cake flour
2 ¼ teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
3 cups finely shredded carrots
3 ½ cups black walnuts
Combined sugar, oil, egg (one at a time) Mix well after each egg
Stir in carrots
Add nuts
Sift together: flour, baking soda, cinnamon
Stir into mixture
Pour into 3 greased 9 inch round cake pans
Bake 30-35 minutes

Cake Icing
1 8oz package cream cheese – softened
1/4 cup butter – softened
1 lb box soft confection sugar
2 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoon lemon juice
Blend cream cheese and butter until smooth
Add sugar, gradually mixing
Stir in lemon and vanilla
If frosting seems too soft – refrigerate for a few minutes

I decorate our entire house for Christmas and I start at Thanksgiving. My husband drags the Christmas tree from the storage area and sets it up in the living room. We don’t decorate the tree, but always have the lights on for Thanksgiving dinner which adds to the festive atmosphere. Once Thanksgiving dinner is over, I sat back, relax, have a glass of wine, and watch the grandkids decorated the Christmas tree. My hubby likes that tradition. They always do a beautiful job, with their parent’s help of course, or else, only the bottom half of the tree would be decorated. I put up two more trees the next day and by the weekend I decorate the rest of the house, including the bathrooms. I would love to hear from you at drake31704@yahoo.com and please visit my website: http://judybaker.coffeecup.com

My next post will be my cheeseball recipe with BB's Special Seasonings - another tradition that just happened years ago.

Merry Christmas to you and your love ones. Judy

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