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When Jimmie Don was first elected to the Texas House in 2006, we learned a lot of things very quickly. The inner workings of the legislature, a new perspective on Texas history…and the fact that Christmas cards are a big deal among legislators! We had seen so many beautiful cards with family photos and messages of Christmas tidings, so in the fall of 2007 we were really scratching our heads over some way we might measure up.

As we began preparing for Thanksgiving 2007, Marie was plying her masterful skill in the kitchen. Our daughter, Michelle, offhandedly joked that we should publish some of those holiday recipes as our Christmas card. Everyone froze where they stood! We had found the answer!

Our son-in-law, Codie, does graphic design and photography for a living. We talked through the idea and VERY quickly pulled together our first card.

Over the years, creating the cookbook cards became a new, but no less celebrated, holiday tradition, and marked the start of our family’s Christmas season. It’s truly been a group effort, combining the talents of all our family members. Motivated by the glowing encouragement of our friends and colleagues, we have enjoyed trying to outdo ourselves, making each card better than the last.

As Jimmie Don announced his retirement from the legislature in 2015, we decided to bring all the recipes together on this website. Each recipe page has a link to the Christmas card in which it appeared (PDF version) in case you would like an offline copy of all this deliciousness.

As we celebrate each Christmas and start each New Year we are reminded of good friends, good food and God’s blessings beyond measure. We hope you enjoy looking through this site and hope that you find a few new favorites to bring to your family’s table.

PS. Yes, there are a few coveted, unpublished, top-secret family recipes. And yes, they will remain so!