Stockings for Soldiers

We received an email from Tina mid-September inviting us to donate to her cause. Tina is from Northern Illinois and has a big heart for our military. All year long she crochets stockings for soldiers and stuffs them full of goodies from all over the country. She made over 300 stockings this year and they were delivered to the Great Lakes Naval Base in Chicago this year.

“My daughter went into the Air Force last year so this was something I came up with to give back.” – Tina

Tina’s Stockings for Soldiers is a not-for-profit effort to bring some Christmas cheer to enlisted military personnel. Homemade, knitted stockings filled with snacks, gifts and small necessities are sent to men and women of the military to let them know they are appreciated and cared about by the folks back home. It involves a handful of volunteers. All donations to Tina’s Stockings for Soldiers are used directly for supplies, stocking stuffers and transporting the finished gifts.

If you are looking for donations please fill out the Donation Request Form on our website or email us at

Rugelach with Walnuts and Pecans


  • ½ cup butter softened
  • 4 ounces cream cheese softened
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1 tablespoon cream
  • 2 tablespoons coarse sugar


  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • ¼ cup raspberry jam or apricot
  • ¼ cup walnuts ground
  • ¼ cup pecans ground
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ cup raisins finely chopped , optional


  • Combine butter, cream cheese, vanilla and salt with a mixer on medium speed for about 2 minutes. Add sugar.
  • Turn mixer to low and add flour just until combined.
  • Divide dough in half and refrigerate 1 hour.
  • Combine filling ingredients in a small bowl.
  • Remove one half of the dough from the fridge and roll into a 10″ circle.
  • Spread the dough with the preserves and sprinkle ½ of the filling over top.
  • Cut the circle into 12 even wedges. Starting at the wide edge, roll each wedge crescent roll style.
  • Whisk together egg and cream. Brush over each cookie and sprinkle with coarse sugar. Place on a prepared pan.
  • Repeat with remaining dough and chill 45 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Bake cookies 28-30 minutes or until lightly browned.

Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Pecans and Spicy Maple Drizzle


  • 12 oz Brussels sprouts ends trimmed, yellow leaves removed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup Pecans
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon red chili flakes


  1. Preheat oven to 400 F. 
  2. Slice all Brussels sprouts in half.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine halved Brussels sprouts, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, salt, and toss to combine.
  4. Place Brussels sprouts on the baking sheet, cut side down. 
  5. Roast in the oven at 400 F for about 25 minutes.

Toast the Pecans

  1. On a baking sheet, spread the Pecans evenly in one layer
  2. Toast the pecans for about 5 minutes at 350 F or until they get darker in color.

Maple Drizzle

  1. In a saucepan, combine maple syrup and red chili flakes over medium heat
  2. Once the drizzle is at a rapid boil, reduce heat and let simmer, stirring frequently


  1. In a large bowl, combine roasted brussels sprouts, toasted pecans, dried cranberries and maple drizzle.   Toss everything together.