….or can he?  Can she?

As much as I might like to try an all eggnog diet, I think my holiday entertaining and consumption will probably involve a little bit of variety.

If you’re still looking for some holiday snack and meal ideas, take a peek at a few of my favorites.   These recipes are EASY, inexpensive, and they’re crowd pleasers.  I wouldn’t lead you astray–anyone can whip these into shape quickly, leaving plenty of time to let your husband do the dishes relax with the fam and drink egg nog celebrate stress-free.

These recipes may not neccesarily scream holiday, but sometimes you just need a super-yummy, super-easy addition to round out a holiday meal.

{Scroll down for these A+ recipes with pictures and practical tips for perfect results}

  •  Spinach and artichoke dip

  • Twice baked potatoes

  • Egg drop soup

  • Quesadillas

Spinach and artichoke dip

Why you should make it:  There won’t be any left.  I’ve never met anyone who didn’t love this easy-to-serve appetizer.  It’s a recipe from my mom.  Thanks, Mom!


1 pkg cream cheese

1 can (14oz) artichoke hearts, chopped

1/2 Cup Mayo

1/2 Cup Parmesan cheese (or whatever cheese you have handy)

garlic to taste (I use about a teaspoon)

1 package of frozen spinach, thawed and drained (optional)

1.  Mix all ingredients by hand or with an electric mixer.  It doesn’t have to be mixed super well, so I mix by hand.  If you opt to use spinach, you should add about 2 extra Tablespoons of mayo.

2.  Put in a 9 inch baking pan

3.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes or until very lightly browned.  Serve warm.  It’s not nearly as good cool.  Yummy served with pretzels, crackers, pita chips, and the like…


Twice baked potatoes

What my dad said about them during his visit last weekend:  “Those are so good.  Those are SO GOOD!”  And they are.


4 large baking potatoes

1/2 Cup ranch dressing

1/2 Cup shredded Cheddar cheese (or whatever you have handy), divided

2 oz cream cheese, softened

1/4 Cup chives (or diced onion works just fine)

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Prick potatoes with a fork and place on a baking sheet.  Bake 1 hour or until tender.  Remove from oven and let cool enough to handle.

2.  Place potatoes on a cutting board.  Cut a one-inch strip horizontally off the top of each, like this:

potatoes sliced

Then scoop out most of the pulp from each tater and toss it all into a mixing bowl and set shells aside, like this:

scoop potatoe

3.  Add dressing, all but 1 Tablespoon of the Cheddar, plus cream cheese and chives to pulp in bowl.  Beat with electric mixer or by hand.  I personally don’t mind having the mixture be a little chunky.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

4.  Fill potatoe shells with potatoe mixture;  sprinkle with remaing Tablespoon Cheddar.

cheese sprinkled potatoes

Place on baking sheet and bake 15 to 20 minutes or until tops begin to brown.

Sprinkle with additional chives if desired and enjoy!

beautiful cooked potatoe


Eggdrop soup

Why you should make it:  The recipe is so easy yet seems so fancy.  This one comes from my grandma–thank you Grams!  This recipe is gluten free.


4 Cups chicken broth

2 eggs, well beaten

2/3 teaspoon salt

2 Tablespoon green onion (or any kind of onion)

1/8 teaspoon white pepper (I substitute black)

1/2 teaspoon sesame oil (I substitute olive oil)

1.  Bring the chicken broth to a boil in a saucepan and add salt.

2.  Mix cornstarch with 2 Tablespoon cold water and add to the soup.  Stir steadily until thickened, then turn off the heat.

3.  Add the egg slowly to the hot soup and stir constantly in a circular motion so the egg forms thin shreds.  I make a whisking motion with a fork in one hand while I pour in the egg with the other hand.

4.  Add minced onion and oil.  Serve hot and SLURP it up!



Why you should make them:  They are SO simple and who doesn’t love CHEESE?!  You can use a griddle to cook multiple quesadillas at once.  I like to go around to my guests and “take order” of what they’d like on a notepad, then I custom make each ‘dilla just as they like.  Corn tortillas make for gluten free, others can have flour tortillas.


Corn and/or flour tortillas

Cheese, primarily shredded, but sliced cheese can work, too

Optional onion, cooked chicken, ham, or turkey…get creative :)

1.  Set your oven range to medium low heat.  Lightly butter one side of your tortilla and place butter-side down.

quesadilla 1

2.  Load it up with cheese, onion, meat, or whatever you like.  Try not to get cheese on the hot surface as it’ll burn and smell bad.



Sometimes when I’m running low on shredded cheese, I start with a slice of cheese.  You can really use whatever you have handy.  Experiment with onion and meats!

3.  When you’re done adding the middle goodies, butter another tortilla and place it on top, butter side up so when you flip the quesadilla, it’ll be butter side down.  Flip the ‘dilla using a spatula after cheese has begun to melt and the bottom tortilla is getting a little crispy, about three minutes.

let it fry

4.  Let the beautiful quesadilla fry another three minutes or so and remove from heat when the bottom tortilla is crispy good.

quesadilla doneServe with salsa, sour cream, and guacamole.  ‘Ole!


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