Topping off Thanksgiving and Christmas Trees

Topping Off Thanksgiving and Christmas Trees

Happy Tuesday, all!  Today I want am topping off Thanksgiving and Christmas trees!

By, topping off Thanksgiving, I mean…sharing with you what I did different that were crowd pleasers.

I have posted my traditional dishes before, but if you need a recipe, then let me know.

Let’s start with Mr. Turkey.


Topping off Thanksgiving and Christmas Trees

My roasted turkey has always turned out well.  I always roast it breast down, and stuff it with onions, apples, celery, and fresh spices (sage, rosemary, thyme).  I cover it with Applewood Bacon.

But, just to mix things up this year…instead of using basting tools, I did injections! I injected into several locations melted butter mixed with orange rind, orange juice and poultry seasoning.

I did this twice during the slow roast at 325 degrees.  The flavor of the meat…particularly the white meat…was amazing.  You could taste the citrus and seasonings in moist meat.

This is a keeper.

Topping off Thanksgiving and Christmas Trees

For the past three years, I have tested new pumpkin pie recipes from blogs and so far, none have disappointed.

This year the pie was fabulous and I found the recipe at Sally’s Baking Addiction, The Great Pumpkin Pie Recipe.

I made my own version of Cinnamon/Sugar Leaves with pie dough and the grandchildren loved them…they definitely are addicting. 

Topping off Thanksgiving and Christmas Trees

The last new item on our Thanksgiving menu was the 1858 Cabernet from Caymus Vineyards in California.

The wine description: “This hand crafted Napa Cabernet is a powerhouse in flavor and texture. Featuring luscious, ripe blackberry flavors with undertones of dark chocolate and toasted oak. The initial surge of raspberry is stunning but almost outdone by the regal tannic finish.”

It is delicious, an excellent cabernet sauvignon that all our guests enjoyed.  I purchased it at Total Wines and would really like more. 

Sadly though, when I purchased our first bottles in the summer, they were $25 a bottle…with inflation, it has gone up considerably.

But, if you want something special…this would be a good choice.

Now, speaking of food…here are some wonderful food gift basket suggestions.  I can personally vouch for the products from Stonewall Kitchens…..they are delicious.  My favorite is the Peach Jam, and Holiday Jam.

Here are the baskets:


Topping off Thanksgiving and Christmas Trees

For some reason, this year, I have really enjoyed looking at tree toppers.  There are so many creative ones.

I first started doing this a couple of weeks ago at Dillard’s. 


Topping off Thanksgiving and Christmas Trees

Topping Off Thanksgiving and Christmas Trees

Cute, right?  My favorite holiday decorations at Dillard’s at by Southern Living and Mud Pie. 

I am tempted to be more creative with our tree toppers…however, I love the traditional ones and don’t mind taking them from year to year.

Topping off Thanksgiving and Christmas Trees

Thanks to blogging and a wonderful collaboration a few years back with Balsam Hill, we have two Christmas trees.

This angel on the Balsam Hill tree is in the front living area.  The angel was my Mother-in-law’s angel and she loved Christmas, so I do this in honor of her and her memory.

My adult children had a great relationship with her.

Topping off Thanksgiving and Christmas Trees

The family room tree is our live tree…still want to have a real one in the house…and it is more of a farmhouse/ country style tree …a reflection of me!

I discovered the star a few years back and I love it for my tree…I will show you the complete tree soon.

Maybe, I could stick the red & white curly ribbons around it at the top…they are so cute!

Today’s slideshow features more Christmas tree toppers….

I hope these ideas from the kitchen and for decorating are helpful…we will be back to Would You Wear It tomorrow…and there is more for fashion and beauty ahead.  Thanks for being here and always….


By Pamela Lutrell

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Goli on Over 50 Feeling 40

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  1. I made the same pumpkin pie you did this year, and it really IS the best ever! In fact, my husband has asked me to make another one this week. SO good!

  2. Good morning Pam,

    You commented that your adult children had a great relationship with your mother-in-law. This would be a great subject to explore further in a blog post. We all want excel at being a grandma. What made this one special?

    I enjoy your posts!

  3. I would love to write more about being a grandmother…thank you for requesting it, Sheri. It is one of my greatest joys. The most important relationship my husband’s mother had with my children was with my daughter…she was her little princess. Grandma gave my children her time and since she was local, she was the only baby sitter they knew. We were are her house often and while transitioning to a new home we even lived with her for awhile. Her husband passed just before our wedding so we were her main family for a long time. While they were young, Grandma was always there. I will write more about my role as a grandmother soon…thank you for asking.

  4. I love the traditional tree toppers you use on your own trees. There’s something about them that evokes peace and hope, and a feeling that no matter how much everything may change, what’s important is still present.
    The colorful, themed trees are very pretty and happy.

  5. I downloaded that pumpkin pie recipe too, but ended up making a “ Junior’s cheesecake” since my son and his family had just been to Junior’s in New York City. I just might make it for my husband and me since you recommend it. Your personal tree toppers are both sentimental and pretty, as I’m sure the trees themselves are. I’ve yet to develop much holiday spirit, but will get there eventually.

  6. I’m with you on the traditional tree toppers, though I do enjoy looking at all the decorations in the stores. I know people who do “theme” trees and change them up often. Here I am with mine that is loaded with family memories, right down to the paper ornaments my sons made for me in Sunday school and school. I treasure those. They come over and give me those funny smiles and say, “Really Mom??!” but I’d have it no other way. I will always use my vintage toppers that I collect. But I love seeing how they decorate in the stores. Dillard’s has some beauties! I like Sheri’s suggestion about discussing grandmas and what women are doing to be a specially loved one. I’d love reading how others are doing it. It’s really very important for me to stay close to my grandsons as they are now young men. We have a wonderful relationship, but it doesn’t happen by accident! Your food looks delicious!

  7. Lovely post this morning! I love those red and white curly ribbon toppers on the tree! Fun that you were focusing on tree toppers as you were out and about. So sweet hearing about your MIL and her relationship with your kids. Already know from your stories that you have a wonderful relationship with your grandchildren. Love hearing about that! This all makes for a joyful holiday season. Have a lovely day!

  8. Your turkey sounds delicious Pam. I put onions and mandarins in the cavity, then pour in Chardonnay- which keeps the bird moist as well. I am interested in trying an injector though, too. Where did you source yours? I love your carousel of food gifts today. We buy from Stonewall Kitchen each year and especially enjoy their line of chutneys. Harry & David’s is a southern Oregon company, about an hour south of us. 🙂 I had a chuckle when I noticed one of the tree toppers was filled with jingle bells, as that would make a terrific early warning system that the cat was in the tree!

  9. Thank you for joining in today, Louine! For me, Christmas is about building family memories and traditions…so I love the stories behind every piece of my decor. I also love to share happy decorations from other places.

  10. I hope I can help to move you along faster, Celia into holiday joy. Let’s all enjoy it together.

  11. I hear you Karen…when one of my sons married they asked to take some of his individual creations and ornaments to their tree. Though I appreciated that they wanted to do that, I also was sad to see them go. But it is a joy to watch all three develop their own traditions.

  12. I have never been so attracted to tree toppers as I have been this year…so many are lots of fun to enjoy. Thanks Deanna….

  13. I found mine at the grocery store. We have an amazing grocery chain here called HEB and I can often find what I need there. It worked well…I highly recommend it.
    Thanks for the recommendation on the chutneys!

  14. Hi Debbie,
    I will write out and post it soon…will let you know. I do not think I have ever written it down. Thanks for asking.

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