Browsing Category: christmas

Pebble From the Birth Place of Jesus

What an amazing opportunity for any Christian.  This is the kind of thing that only comes around once in a lifetime.  This is no ordinary cross; this is the ability to own a piece of the cave where the baby Jesus spent his first night with his mother Mary.  You can own a piece of the cave where the magi came to bestow gifts upon the newly born Lord.  Here was the cave in the rear of the house, and used for cattle. In a manger, as the most ready and fitting place, the babe was laid. The place where the shepherds came to pay their adorations, the place marked by the star of Bethlehem.

There are many different options, but this is my favorite: The Carpenter’s Cross is the embodiment of the simple life Christ lived. Straight, clean lines, the ultimate in modesty and a true symbol of the working life of Christ, who Himself was a carpenter by trade. With The Original Nativity Stone at the apex of the Cross, this is the perfect Christian gift for the man, woman or child who strives to live life on a daily basis according to the teachings of Jesus.

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Carpenter’s Cross

 

Emperor Justinian built the church that now stands over the cave of the nativity in 565 A.D. on the site of a previous church built by Constantine Cesar and his mother the Empress Helena, in 327 A.D.  It is one of the oldest churches in the world.

The cave of the nativity is 38 feet long by 11 wide, and a silver star in a marble slab at the eastern end marks the precise spot where the Lord was born. There is an inscription on the star that reads: Hie de virgine Maria Jesus Christus natus est. that means: Here Jesus Christ was born to the Virgin Mary.  Silver lamps are always burning around, and an altar stands near, which is used in turn by the monks of the convents. The manger in which the Lord was laid was taken to Rome by Pope Sixtus V. and placed in the church of St. Maria Maggiore, but a marble one supplies its place. A few feet opposite, an altar marks the spot where the Magi stood. The walls are covered with silken hangings.

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The actual birth place of Jesus

 

The stones that are contained in the crosses were removed during construction in the cave.  You can read the story about it here by clicking on the cross, and then on the second page clicking on “The Story.”

This is the only time that stones from this most holy of places will legally be removed.  Once these stones sell out, they will never be available again.  Take this opportunity to give a gift that will become an heirloom for generations of your family.  Give the gift that truly keeps Christ in Christmas. If you want to buy one now, you can get 15% off with code HOLIDAY15  Purchase yours here Nativity Stone Crosses

If you want a gold cross, this one is really beautiful: The Classic Nativity Stones Cross is perhaps the most spiritually connected Christian gift symbolizing our love for Jesus Christ.  The unique design of this cross is the work of world-renowned jewelry designer Paul Dimitriu.

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The Classic Nativity Stones Cross

 

Red Velvet Hot Chocolate

Red Velvet Cake is one of my absolute favorite indulgences.  I found this recipe for Red Velvet Hot Chocolate on Adventures in the Kitchen. I’ve added some modifications that I’ll be making so that it’s dairy-free and a bit healthier.  This looks like a yummy treat for Valentines Day.

(photo from adventuresinthekitchen.com)

Red Velvet Hot Chocolate (see my modifications in parenthesis below for a non-dairy healthier version)

4 Servings

What You’ll Need:

4 cups whole milk (can also use any non dairy milk such as coconut or almond – make sure it’s unsweetened)
1 cup heavy whipping cream (or can use cashew cream – click here for the recipe)
1/4 cup sugar (or 1/8 cup of agave nectar or 1/4 c of honey)
2 tsp. red food coloring
1 cup chocolate chips (or roughly chopped organic dark chocolate)
3 tbsp. cream cheese (could use additional heavy cashew cream in place of cream cheese)
Cocoa powder for garnish
1/4 tsp. sea salt

Instructions

  1. Pour the heavy cashew cream or regular heavy whipping cream into a mixer and start mixing. Then add the sweetener (sugar, honey or agave) and mix for 3-5 minutes until just before it begins to form stiff peaks.
  2. Add either the cream cheese or additional cashew cream and mix for 3 more minutes on medium speed.  Can place it in the refrigerator to keep it cold.
  3. Heat the whole milk or non-dairy milk in a saucepan on medium heat and mix in the chocolate and salt ensuring that you stir continually. Once it’s all combined and completely warmed add the food coloring and stir.
  4. Top with additional whipped cream cheese or cashew cream and sprinkle with cocoa powder.

Coconut Eggnog

Homemade Eggnog has been a tradition in my family for as long as I can remember.  When I was little, my parents had a Christmas caroling party every year, and my dad would make an adult eggnog, and a children’s eggnog.  We would drink eggnog before the caroling, and hot chocolate after.  Eggnog has been one of those things that just makes it feel like Christmas time for me.  However, recently I realized what exactly went into making eggnog, and decided I needed to find a healthier version.  So far, this one is the winner.  It is not a perfect replacement for the real thing, but how could it be?  This recipe comes from Wellnessmama.com.

Ingredients
  • 6 cups of coconut milk (about 3 cans)
  • 6 egg yolks
  • ¼ cup (or more) spiced rum or brandy (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon of vanilla
  • ¼ cup honey or cane sugar or a few drops of stevia extract (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
Instructions
    1. How To Make (Easy Version)
  1. Put all ingredients except alcohol in Nutirbullet or high powered blender and blend until smooth.
  2. SLOWLY bring up to low heat in a medium saucepan, being careful not to let it boil. When it is warmed and barely starting to thicken, it is ready.
  3. Chill in fridge for a few hours or overnight and whisk alcohol in just before serving.
  4. How To Make (Traditional Way)
  5. Heat coconut milk and vanilla until warm in medium saucepan.
  6. Whisk or blend the egg yolks, sugar and spices in a blender.
  7. Slowly add in about half of the coconut mixture to the egg yolks to warm it and then add the whole mixture back into the saucepan.
  8. Bring up to low heat and whisk until barely starting to thicken.
  9. Stir in rum or brandy and serve hot or cold.
  10. Enjoy!

Photo from thekitchn.com Check out her Puerto Rican version of coconut eggnog: Coquito

Holiday Nail Art

Nail at is not something that is typically something that is on my radar, but while researching for holiday ideas, I kept coming across all of these really amazing holiday inspired manicures.  I was really surprised by the artistry and the amount of time that must go into some of these intricate patterns.  So I did some digging, and found some photo tutorials for nails that didn’t look too difficult, but still had a fun and festive end result. Also, check out this line of non toxic nail polish and nail polish remover!

Pecan Shortbread

My husband really loves a good shortbread, it’s one of his favorite holiday cookies.  Me being me decided to hunt for a healthier version that still tastes amazing.  I ran across this recipe for Pecan Shortbread on Sweet Freedom and thought this very well may be the one.  It uses whole wheat flour instead of enriched white, honey instead of refined sugar and ghee instead of butter.  For those of you who may not be familiar with ghee, it is clarified butter, often used in Indian cuisine.  Unlike butter it is stripped of the impurities such as saturated fat and milk solids so some consider it a bit healthier.  It can be found at most health food stores.

For the recipe please click here.