Sunday, December 11, 2016

Menu Plan Monday: December 12- December 18 {FREE Recipe Book and Giveaway}

This is the last full week of Autumn, although we have already received some wintery weather this past week. This is also the middle of Advent! We have two more weeks (including this one) to prepare for the coming of Christ! Cleaning, cooking and preparing our hearts will be main focuses in this house.

In honor of the Rejoicing that will be done this week, I am offering a FREE Christmas Recipes collected by The Zelie Group for anyone that likes and shares my Pinot Noir and Prayers Facebook Page starting this Wednesday. Make sure to message me your email so I can send you the beautiful PDF file put together by Kerry! I am also going to be hosting a Giveaway soon for a gorgeous printed bracelet made by my incredibly talented friend, Jen, over at Faith and Fabric. I'll be sharing more information on this later!

We will be celebrating the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Saint Lucy, Saint John of the Cross, the O Antiphons and the Fourth Sunday of Advent! We also have THREE Christmas parties to attend! It is never too late to revamp your Advent so check out my Advent Bucket Lists and post on the O Antiphons for ideas. Here is our menu for this fun and exciting Third Week of Advent on Menu Plan Monday:

Monday: Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe
Chicken Fajitas with Spanish Rice and Black Beans

Tuesday: Feast of Saint Lucy
Turkey Burgers

Wednesday: Feast of Saint John of the Cross

Chicken Nugget Salad

Friday: Ugly Sweater Football Party
Potluck Style Dinner with our Football Family

Saturday: O Antiphons Begin

Sunday: Fourth Sunday of Advent, My Birthday and Cookie Exchange
We will be eating at TWO Christmas Parties tonight

Are you participating in any Cookie Exchanges this year? Still looking for the perfect Christmas cookie recipe? I decided to share Starlight Cookies with both Cookie Exchanges I am participating in this year. The Starlight Cookie tells the story of the Nativity and is a beautiful and yummy reminder of the reason for the season. This is the Recipe that was sent to me by a friend. It was originally found at the blog Shower of Roses. They offer a printable and a great way to gift these cookies in a mason jar so make sure to check them out and thank her for such an amazing recipe idea! I will be baking mine this Saturday for our Christmas Parties!

1/2 Cup Chopped Walnuts
1/2 Cup White Chocolate Chips
1/2 Cup Dried Cranberries
1/3 Cup Brown Sugar
1/3 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Rolled Oats
1 1/4 C All-Purpose Flour
1/2 Tsp Baking Soda
1/2 Tsp Sea Salt
1/2 Cup Softened Butter
1 Egg
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract

Chopped Walnuts: Represents the rocky road the holy family traveled to Bethlehem
White Chocolate Chips: Represents the stars, especially the one that led the Wise Men to Jesus
Dried Cranberries: Represents the tartness of the doors that were closed because they refused to host the holy family that cold night
Brown Sugar: Represents the brown hills of Bethlehem
Sugar: Represents snow
Rolled Oats: Represents the animals that were present in the stable where Jesus was born
Flour: Represent the wholesome goodness of the shepherds in the fields
Baking Soda and Sea Salt: Represents the Joyful tears that were shared on the holy night Jesus was born of the Most Pure Virgin Mary.
Vanilla Extract: Represents the sweet happiness that the Savior was born
One Egg: Represents the baby Jesus

To make the cookies:

Think of the preparation St. Joseph and Our Blessed Mother must have made for this journey to Bethlehem:
Heat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a cookie sheet or line it with parchment paper.

For the light of Heaven:
In a medium bowl, beat together 1/2 cup softened butter, 1 egg, and 1 tsp of vanilla until fluffy.

Add the hardships of the journey to the light of Heaven:
Add all the other ingredients and mix together until well blended. Drop by heaping spoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheets

Remember the hardships of Jesus' life on earth and His Passion:
Bake for 8 - 10 minutes, or until edges brown.

Anticipate His coming:
Cool on baking sheets or remove to cool on wire racks.

Appreciate the joy and promise of His birth:
Enjoy eating them!

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