60 Days…Day 15

Gingerbread with vanilla icing, butter cake and pumpkin pie.

“Make now always the most precious time. Now will never come again.”  ~ 
Captain Jean-Luc Picard

Merry Christmas!  Happy Holidays!  Seasons Greetings!  I am not a wordsmith about holiday greetings and I welcome any good wish people want to send my way.

I did not exercise today, but I stood in the kitchen cooking for about 6 hours, so that must count for something.  I published my Christmas menu yesterday which featured roasted tenderloin of beef with horseradish sauce, and I will include both recipes at the end of this post.



Tennessee River
The Tennessee River just west of Chattanooga.

We were fortunate to spend Christmas with both my parents and my in-laws.  Sadly, my daughter was traveling in Colorado, so our holiday celebration will be delayed for a week or so, and I miss my horses and my Sloughis terribly, even though I am grateful that they are in the excellent care of my friends, Holley, Jeanne and Kay (three of the blessings for whom I am grateful).

More and more, gifts mean less and less.  Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday for this very reason. I love cooking, food, and enjoying time with family and friends.  The shopping and stress are less appealing every year.  I count my blessings in that I have everything I need, and lots of things I don’t.  This year, I am trying to focus on slowing down and enjoying life’s experiences.

DSC_4503-001We spent Christmas in Georgia, which is a state filled with beautiful trees and foothills that roll into the Smoky Mountains at the northern end of the state.  The landscape from the midwest changes almost the instant that you pass out of Indiana into Kentucky and then makes another dramatic transformation in Tennessee just south of Nashville.  Little water falls spontaneously burst forth from the rocky roadside and blue mountaintops peak out from the mist.  I would love to live in the area around Chattanooga or northern Georgia.  We also had the privilege of witnessing a spectacular red and purple Christmas sunset this evening.  The photo below does not do it justice. It was magnificent.

Georgia Sunset

I hope you enjoyed your Christmas, that you had plenty to eat, and made lots of happy memories.


Below is my recipe for beef tenderloin.  Beef tenderloin is incredibly simple to make, but it is well worth it to buy the best cut of meat that you can.  In a tenderloin, the difference between prime and choice is huge.  It is equally important not to ruin it by overcooking it.

Christmas Roast Beast


  • 1 7-8 lb whole prime tenderloin of beef
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper


  1. Take your tenderloin out of the oven one hour before cooking in order to let it come to room temperature.
  2. Pat tenderloin dry with paper towels.  This is an important step because removing the excess moisture will help it to brown properly.
  3. Rub the tenderloin all over with olive oil.
  4. Generously salt and pepper (at least 2 teaspoons of each) all over
  5. Preheat the oven to 425º.
  6. Roast tenderloin for 60-75 minutes.
  7. Cover tenderloin loosely with foil and LET THE TENDERLOIN REST AT LEAST 20 MINUTES BEFORE CARVING.  (This is super important.)DSC_4593

Horseradish Cream Sauce 


  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup grated extra hot prepared horseradish
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Mix all ingredients together well and refrigerate overnight before serving.





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