From Daryl aka Avery: This year, I am grateful for the love of my family and the support of my friends. As much as writing means to me, my family and friends will always mean more. Thanksgiving - and, let's face it, all year long - is a time to reflect on the good in our lives, on the important. The little things vanish. The big picture matters. Wishing all of you a happy, blessed Thanksgiving season and rest of the year! And here's a sweet recipe, one of my favorites, to thank all of you for being our fans. HOLIDAY CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES
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Lucy: I'm so grateful for family and friends and pets and a wonderfully interesting job! As you've probably heard, we had some losses in our family this year, plus a health crisis--all of this made bearable by the support of people I love and who love me. And I include readers and online friends of course! So thank you--and hope you have a wonderful celebration this year. Here is my favorite appetizer, HOT PEPPER JELLY CHEESE PUFFS. They are not hard to make and once you put them out, they'll get snatched off the plate!
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From Sheila: I'm grateful for a job, if writing can be called a job rather than an avocation, that lets me meet so many wonderful people and find friends (such as those at Mystery Lovers' Kitchen), and travel to interesting places, and eat a lot of good food (research, you know). I live only a few miles from Plymouth, where it all began, and after a few New England winters you have to appreciate the hardships those Pilgrims faced and overcame. How strong they must have been! We honor them each year through our Thanksgiving feast, surrounded by family and friends. Since it's a hectic time of year, here's my new favorite quick and easy appetizer, Parmesan Shortbread.
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From Leslie: I'm a firm believer in practicing gratitude every day. The simple habit of thinking, even writing down, three to five things that I'm grateful for in the day---from a yummy breakfast to a sweet conversation with my elderly mother---calms me, and helps me keep life's challenges in perspective. (The habit isn't just for mornings. On the occasional sleepless night, I try to think of everything I'm grateful for during the day just passed, starting at the very beginning. Nothing is too minor. I rarely get past breakfast. If I get to the end of the day, still awake, I get up!)
But as the newest member of the Mystery Lovers' Kitchen, I would be remiss not to say "thank you" to my lovely blog sisters for including me in the fun, and for all of you readers, who give us the gift of your time and attention when you read our books and when you visit with us here. My thank you is a snack that will be a hit at any party you throw or attend, and makes a great gift, tied up in a holiday-themed bag and tied with a ribbon: Spiced Glazed Nuts and Pretzel Mix.
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From Cleo: Life is like a cup of coffee. Take time to refill! The holiday season is a beautiful time of year, but it can also be stressful and even painful for those of us who have suffered losses. Some of us may be vexed by financial or work-related worries, by family strife or health problems. That's why Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays, because it reminds us all to stop and take time, no matter our burdens, no matter our worries, stop and take time to give thanks for the blessings we do have, but also to enjoy a feast from our labors, to sip that cup of coffee that we so diligently brewed.
Marc and I sincerely wish you all a beautiful holiday season. We hope you will take the time you deserve to slow down and truly feel peace and joy in your hearts, starting with today, a day of Thanksgiving, a day to count our blessings...and eat with joy.
May you drink with joy, too. And I'm happy to help with this Pumpkin Spice Latte. This drink is absolutely delicious and better than many coffeehouses will make for you because this recipe includes real pumpkin and pumpkin pie spices instead of the artificial flavoring in pumpkin syrup that's often used in coffee shop lattes. So, after all your feasting and Black Friday shopping, when you're quiet and cozy inside your warm house, whip this up, put you feet up, and savor a sip of the season!
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From Krista: I heard recently that every day brings something good. Of course, that's true. It's the terrible things that sometimes overshadow them. I am so very blessed to still have my elderly mother. I'm grateful that my dogs, cats, and I made it through four (count them, four!) surgeries and one near death experience in the last 12 months. I've had enough of surgeries to do me for years, thank you! I'm also so very grateful for my readers. They bring me such joy and always inspire me.
And every single day I'm grateful that I was born in a country that values freedom and allows us to follow our dreams.
My thank you recipe is a recent one that we liked so much we're eating it again as you read this, my Cream Cheese Pumpkin Pie with Caramel Sauce.