A Playlist for the Holiday Season

Can you believe it’s December? The holiday season is upon us and you know what that means…Christmas music! For most of November, I was itching to break out my Christmas playlist, but I stuck to my tradition and held out until Thanksgiving Day.

What makes Christmas music unique is that artists of all genres can sing the same song, yet make it their own. I can listen to same Christmas song and still experience it differently. Two years ago, I shared a playlist that included some of my favorite Christmas songs, with classics from Bing Crosby and The Temptations to more modern Christmas tunes from Justin Bieber and Pentatonix.

This year I wanted to do something different. I grew up listening to a lot of R&B/soul music so it’s no surprise that the Christmas songs I love the most are those by some of the most iconic R&B/soul singers.

Sierra’s Soulful Christmas features over 2 hours of my favorite Christmas songs. Most of the songs on this playlist are nostalgic, reminding me of many childhood holiday memories like traveling to Kentucky to spend Christmas with my grandparents and extended family, the men’s choir at church singing their rendition of Silent Night (Temptations’ Style), or making a Christmas mix CD with my sister (I think I still have that CD lol).

Click to listen!

Happy Holidays!


It’s Time for Christmas Movies!

Can you believe we are 3 weeks away from Christmas?!

This year may look different from years past, but that doesn’t mean we still can’t enjoy some of our favorite family traditions.

One of my favorite things about this time of year is Christmas movies. I love curling up on the couch with a bowl of popcorn or some hot chocolate to enjoy a good holiday film. Every year, there are always new Christmas movies streaming on all our favorite platforms that I enjoy watching, but nothing beats watching one of my favorites.

Most of the movies I enjoy watching at Christmas time are classics that the entire family can watch together. Check out my list below. Maybe you’ll find a new Christmas movie to add to your list of favorites.

What are some of your favorite Christmas movies?


When I Feel Anxious

2020 has been a year like no other, but you don’t need me to tell you that. We’ve all been living it! A global pandemic, mounting social justice issues, civil unrest, a polarizing election. This year has been A LOT!

Over the last 8 months, I have surfed the waves of anxiety and I’m pretty confident I’m not the only one. At times, it’s been easy to let the circumstances of this year overwhelm me. And now, as we near the holiday season, with COVID cases increasing every day, I feel the waves of anxiety starting to churn again. I have been here before, most notably back in March.

I flipped through my journal to something I wrote on March 17, 2020. It was written just a few days after everything began to shut down. Anxiety was starting to rear its ugly head. I felt it mentally and physically. In that moment, I turned to the coping mechanisms that work for me like yoga, grounding techniques like boxed breathing and the 5-4-3-2-1 exercise, limiting my social media and news intake, and listening to music. Most importantly, as a follower of Jesus, I turned to the Bible. I started to identify verses that were encouraging and filled with truth to help center my thoughts and shift my focus. In some of my most anxious moments, meditating on the truth of these verses has helped me to refocus. Today, I want to share a few of my favorites with you. If you’re like me and battling some anxiety, I hope you find these verses encouraging!

Feeling anxious? What coping mechanisms do you turn to manage anxiety?


She Called Me Mom

It finally happened…my baby girl started calling me mom. It caught me off guard in the moment, but I can’t say I’m really surprised. Skylar is at the stage of development where she is literally picking up on everything we say. So I’m pretty sure she learned to call me mom by listening to and copying her brother.

The same thing happened when Jaden was around Skylar’s age. One Saturday morning, he looked right at me and called me mom. I was caught off guard then too.

Hearing my little humans call me mom for the first time is always a shock because it suddenly makes them feel not so little anymore. Those moments remind me that my kids will not be little forever. They are growing up and like it or not, it’s happening fast! Each new milestone is a reminder to embrace every stage, no matter how prepared I am for it.

Luckily, I’m not yet exclusively mom. I still get to hear my baby girl call me mommy and if I’m honest, I would be okay if she called me mommy forever.


Perfect Pumpkin Spice Pancakes

It’s pumpkin season! Whether you love it or hate, it’s here. Growing up, pumpkin wasn’t something we ever had in our house. I didn’t have my first taste of pumpkin pie until I was at least 21. My then-boyfriend-now-husband introduced me to it. I’m still not a huge pumpkin fan, but I do enjoy a slice of pumpkin pie or a pumpkin donut from our favorite orchard almost every year.

Last month, I came across a pumpkin spice latte pancake recipe in a Kroger magazine. As I flipped through that magazine and gazed upon all the fall decor and recipes, the pancake recipe caught my eye. It seemed like the perfect way to help usher in the season in our home.

During my weekly grocery store run, I searched high and low (literally) for canned pumpkin and pumpkin spice. I stood in the baking eye staring at the spices for at least 10 minutes. Luckily, I found one jar of pumpkin spice on a top shelf that I could barely reach, but there was absolutely no canned pumpkin in sight!

I was sad that I wouldn’t get to try this new recipe, but luckily my husband had not one, but two cans of pumpkin in the cabinet. Believe it or not, the pumpkin was stashed away for our cat! Did you know that cats can eat pumpkin? I didn’t until my husband started giving it to her to help with digestion (that’s a story for another day).

Anyway, I was super excited to be able to make these pancakes.

The recipe was super simple to follow and did not disappoint. The pancakes turned out AMAZING! They were so good that I got a request from my son to make them again the following weekend.

Perfect Pumpkin Spice Pancakes

If you live for everything pumpkin spice, you definitely want to try this recipe. If you’re like me and occasionally enjoy pumpkin flavored treats, you definitely want to try these too! You won’t be disappointed. Trust me!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup pumpkin purée
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons instant espresso powder (I omitted this, but if you like espresso you can include it)
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 cups Buttermilk Pancake and Waffle Mix (I used Cracker Barrel Buttermilk Baking and Pancake Mix)
  • Butter or oil, for greasing griddle or skillet and serving
  • Warm maple or pancake syrup
  • Whipped cream for topping (optional)

Here’s the link to the recipe and cooking directions if you missed it above.

Perfect Pumpkin Spice Pancakes

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the recipe if you decide to give it a try!