Holiday Cheer is Back

by Anna on December 1, 2014

I really don’t remember when I started doing Holiday Cheer, but I started my first blog in 2008 and I was doing it for a year or two before then, so I may have started it in 2006, which means this is my eighth year.  The first year or two I did via an email list. People joined the list and everyday during December, I sent an email with a recipe included.  It appears I moved to my blog in 2009.  As I have for the past couple of years, I’ll have some guest bloggers, but I’ll also be doing some posts myself.

Since for most December 1st ushers in a busy social calendar, here’s some recipes to take along to one of your gathers: Herb Veggie Dip, 7-Layer Bean Dip and Sugar and Cinnamon Pecans.

Herb Veggie Dip Mix


1 tbsp parsley

1 tbsp thyme

1 ½ tsp dried tarragon

1 ½ tsp minced onion

¾ tsp garlic powder

1/8 tsp salt

1/8 tsp pepper

2 cups sour cream

2 tsp lemon juice


Combine all ingredients and mix until well blended.  Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving.  Serve with assorted fresh vegetables.

NOTE:  To make a gift of this recipe, combine all the herbs together and store in a ziplock bag (I use the ‘jewelry bags found at hobby stores).  Attach a gift tag onto the bag with instructions to add herb mix with 2 cups sour cream and 2 tsp lemon juice.


7-Layered Bean Dip


1 can (16 oz) refried beans

1 pkg taco seasoning

1 (12 oz) carton avocado dip

1 (16 oz) carton sour cream

1 (4.5 oz) can chopped or sliced black olives

2 large tomatoes, seeded and chopped

1 (16 oz) jar picante sauce

1-2 cups shredded cheddar cheese


Combine refried beans and taco seasoning . Spread bean mixture into the bottom of a 12x8x2 pan (I use an 8×8 pan).  Layer remaining ingredients. Serve with tortilla chips.

If fixing ahead of time, I always wait to add the cheese until just before serving.




1 large egg white

3 cups pecan halves

1/3 cup cinnamon & sugar

*For a cinnamon sugar mixture:

use one tablespoon cinnamon to 1/3 cup sugar.

Be sure to use good quality cinnamon.

2 teaspoons good vanilla

1/4 teaspoon salt


Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

  1. Whisk the egg white in a cup. Pour the egg whites over the nuts, stirring until the nuts are coated with egg white.
  2. In a small bowl, stir the cinnamon, vanilla, sugar, and salt together. Add the cinnamon sugar mixture to the nuts, a little a time, while stirring.
  3. Spread the coated nuts on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes without stirring. Use a spatula to remove the nuts from the hot baking sheet immediately. Allow to cool thoroughly before storing in tightly closed container. Store in a cool place.

It is Christmas in the heart that puts Christmas in the air. ~W.T. Ellis

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