We were so fortunate to spend time with our family over Christmas.  It is always crazy.


But family gatherings should be at least a little crazy.

They have a way of putting people together who place  the love of family above any differences.   We create memories that are precious and too few in number.  I love my family.  My parents have survived many ups and downs.  Their faith has quietly led the way and set an example for us to learn from.  I cannot thank them enough for the foundation they gave us to build our own families off of.  Perfect, we are not.  But deeply respectful and loving of what we have been given?  Yes.  Families are priceless commodities!

Of course, family gatherings bring food.  This Christmas we ate at Gar and Nancy’s.  Gar is the master chef of our family.  And one of these days I am going to have him guest post on here one of his dishes.  They are amazing!

This year I worked on an appetizer.   A remake of the favorite Artichoke Dip.  I received this recipe many years ago from a friend when Bob was in anesthesia school.  This year I did a rethink on it.  And this is what I came up with.  Serve it warm with tortillas, cut up pita bread, baguette, or veggies.  All the better if you can use local ingredients.  For my latest batch I found local cranberries and cheeses.  Next year maybe our hoop house will hold out some fresh spinach for us!



Christmas Artichoke Dip


  • 2 cans artichokes (drain the water and chop into bite size pieces)
  • 1-2 cans green chilies
  • 6 ounces cream cheese (Organic Valley)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream (Organic Valley)
  • 1/2 cup parmasean cheese grated (Sartori's Bellavitano)
  • 2 cups provalone cheese grated (Organic Valley)
  • 4 minced garlic cloves
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 cups chopped fresh spinich
  • 1 cup chopped fresh cranberries
  • (optional) juice of 1 lime


  1. Bake at 375 F for 30 minutes. Stir once or twice during baking. Serve it warm with tortillas, cut up pita bread, baguette, or veggies.
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