These last few weeks since Thanksgiving have been so busy! It's a shame that the happiest time of year always goes by so quickly, when all I really want to do is slow things down and enjoy it. I am trying. We got our tree up two weekends ago. A few years back (much to my dismay...) we got a fake tree. Every year I try to convince myself that I like it. I'm getting there, even though I still don't think it compares to a big, fat, real tree. I try to disguise it with all of my grandmother's glass ornaments, my mom's homemade treasures, and now little do-dads that my son brings home from school. It's the ornaments that make our tree special. I have to admit that I do like the fact that I don't have water stains on my floors and pine needles all over the place any more. I still have tinsel tracked all over the house though. That will never change!
I just love waking up to a Christmas tree in the house. It reminds me of when I was a kid. The best part is the excitement on my son's face. There is nothing like seeing Christmas through the eyes of a six year old. Everything is magical.
I've been shopping like crazy and I'm just about done. The stores are hectic but a part of me kind of likes it. There is an excitement in the air, like no other time of year. I enjoy checking things off my list and feeling happy when I find a perfect "something" for someone I love.
We had a little dusting of snow today. It quickly turned to rain, but I hear there is more coming tomorrow. Even though I hate driving in it, it definitely adds to the feeling of the season. I've been trying to do my shopping during the week, so on the weekends I can stay home and cozy. Especially when the weather is bad, there is no place like home on the weekends. We stay in our jammies, watch movies, and play games. Lot's of hot chocolate is consumed ♥
This past Sunday morning I made us special Sunday breakfast. I also broke out the special Christmas dishes! : )
I got this overnight pumpkin French toast recipe from The Meal Makeover Moms website. I am an avid listener to their podcast and have made several of their recipes in the past. All have been fantastic!
I especially love "overnight" recipes because you get everything done the night before so in morning you just have to pop it in the oven. This only took me a few minutes to prepare on Saturday night. Sunday morning I enjoyed coffee while my breakfast baked away in the oven ♥
This would be a perfect Christmas morning breakfast!
My son ate his whole plate and asked for more. I had a second helping myself!
This French toast was moist, delicious, not overly sweet, with just a hint of pumpkin flavor. I used chopped walnuts instead of pecans (what the recipe called for) and it was perfect! Just out of the oven I drizzled with a little maple syrup before serving....Mmmmmm!
So did he love it?
Here is the recipe. It's easy-peasy!
You will need:
1 large French baguette, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
4 large eggs
3/4 cup low-fat milk
3/4 cup pumpkin (make sure it's 100% pure pumpkin)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 pinch nutmeg
1/3 cup chopped pecans (I used walnuts)
Lightly coat an 8x8 baking dish with non-stick spray. Arrange the bread slices evenly in the pan. It's okay if some overlap a bit.
Whisk the eggs, milk, pumpkin, 2 tablespoons of the brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large bowl until well combined. Pour egg mixture over the bread slices. Cover with plastic wrap or foil and refrigerate overnight.
In the morning, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Top the bread with the chopped nuts (if desired) and the remaining 2 tablespoons of brown sugar. Bake, uncovered, about 30 minutes. Drizzle with maple syrup, slice, and serve.
Reheated leftovers the next morning are yummy too! I'm just sayin'..... : )
Here are a few other Meal Makeover Moms recipes that I've tried:
Banana chocolate chip muffins (my favorite!)
Chocolate cherry almond granola bars (adapted from MMOM's Grab & Go Granola Bars)
Pumpkin spice bundt cake
Strawberry french toast
Ok then - I'm off to do more shopping, wrapping, decorating, baking, errand running, Christmas card making, Elf on the Shelf moving, plus working at my job, and maybe some sleeping....hopefully! Christmas is two weeks away!!! Tis the Season!!!! ♥
Hope you all are well! xo