Photo by Pexels. Unfortunately, I didn’t take a good picture of the ones my friend gave me.

A friend gave me a pot of vibrant, red tulips as a belated birthday present when she came to visit me over a month ago. I enjoyed the beautiful blooms for as long as they lasted, but soon they started to fade, the leaves withering shortly thereafter.

Fortunately, I’ve gained enough experience with plants over the last year to not be dismayed by this process. I quickly looked online to learn about tulip care, then I let the leaves wilt completely before cutting them off, in accordance with my research. Soon I was taking the bulbs out of the dirt, gently shaking each one clean before storing them in a paper bag in a dark corner of my closet to allow them to rest and be replenished for a season.

This whole process reminded me of the hyacinth my mom gave me last year and the similar process it had to go through. Ideally, I would have planted it outdoors last fall, but since we still live in an apartment with no land of our own, it stayed covered until recently. As I withdrew it from its resting spot, I nervously wondered what might have become of it at this point.

Fortunately, despite all the gardening mistakes that I’m sure I have made with this plant, I was delighted to see bright green shoots protruding out of the dirt. Life was beginning to spring forth after an extended time of darkness, hiddenness, and rest.

The hyacinth

Thinking about these two plants and the necessary process they must pass through to bloom for another season has caused me to think a lot about how necessary the different seasons of our lives are. In particular, I have given much thought to how vital our own seasons of winter must be. Perhaps our own lives can only flourish and blossom again after we weather our own personal winters.

We all inevitably need times of rest and quietness. Maybe those moments where we feel most hidden, or where we are forced to take an extended period of rest, or simply when the days seem the coldest and darkest are the moments in which God is preparing us for the coming spring, where life will be vibrant and we can fully thrive again. Because even when we feel hidden, God’s eyes still continue to be upon us. And when we are forced to be still and rest, He is still at work within us. And even when darkness seems to surround us, His Word is still a lamp to our feet and light to our path (Psalm 119:105). He doesn’t waste our winter seasons in any way.

These thoughts make me want to encounter my own future winters differently. I want to recognize that God is at work even then, and that the winter months will eventually give way to a beautiful spring as long as I let Him have His way in me during the long winter days. But I don’t want to always just look forward to the spring. I hope and pray that I can find the beauty in all the seasons as they ebb and flow throughout life, both physically and personally.

For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.”

Ecclesiastes 3:1

Five Years Old

Photo by Kaboompics .com on

My son turned five a few weeks ago, and I felt a mixture of emotions on his big day. That morning, I put Nicole Nordeman’s song “Slow Down” on repeat as I hung up decorations in our dining room area and cried my eyes out. I love the ways in which Liam is growing and maturing, but it’s all so bittersweet, as I know that he will leave behind some of his cute, childlike ways as he continues to grow.

The day proved to be busy between decorating the house, running a few errands, wrapping presents, preparing cupcakes for his class complete with chocolate mustaches (his favorite thing in the world) and then preparing cake and a spaghetti dinner later that evening. Nonetheless, I found myself reminiscing in the midst of the busyness over what life has been like with Liam as a part of it.

Every year has felt monumental in one way or another with this little boy in our lives, from the major adjustment for JJ and me of having a baby in our home, to dealing with an illness he was diagnosed with and its lasting effects for nearly the entire following year. Then there was the pandemic only three months later, followed by a slow return to “normal” life over the course of the following year. And just as life seemed to be normalizing again, we stepped into last year, which brought with it a major move across state and the beginning of school for Liam, among other major events that marked our lives.

Life has indeed been an adventure since Liam was born, and it has been interesting to see more of his personality emerge and to watch him develop in the midst of all the trials and challenges life has presented to us thus far.

Perhaps the most telling of trials as far as Liam’s personality is concerned was watching him start school in September. The experience cemented in my mind how hard transitions are for my little boy. With very few experiences in a structured setting due to all the health issues we navigated as a family, the adjustment proved to be difficult for him, as he not only needed to learn academically but on a social level as well.

I spent most of that semester in tears as I desperately prayed for God to work powerfully in Liam’s life and to help him to be the little boy that God wanted him to be. As much heartache as those following months brought me due to Liam’s struggles, I also saw God’s faithfulness and knew He heard my pleas. In the midst of that intense and challenging season, Liam started to  ask questions about God and to show spiritual interest more than ever.

Early on in the school year, he asked me out of the blue if God was his friend, and when I told him yes, that God wanted to be, he then stated that he would like to invite Him to his birthday party.

On another occasion, Liam asked me if God was hiding. We had talked about how God was everywhere but how we could not see Him with our physical eyes, so I guess he assumed that must mean God was hiding.

I grappled with the question for a moment until I was reminded of a verse from Jeremiah.

“You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.”

Jeremiah 29:13 ESV

This, in turn, led me to tell Liam that it was indeed as if God were hiding, but He wanted Liam to find him.

Liam has also expressed more interest in praying throughout the course of last semester, chiming in and thanking God for our food when JJ prays for our dinner each night, and even recently, Liam thought to immediately ask God to heal his knee when he scraped it over a week ago—something that I had not even thought to do.

I don’t mean to paint this picture of the perfect poster child that is spiritually seeking God, because that is definitely not the case. Liam generally complains when I insist that he watch a Christian cartoon before a secular one, and sometimes he tries to shush me when I’m praying for him on the nights that, according to him, he’s too tired to listen to my prayers. Yet other times, I catch glimpses of an intense spiritual battle being waged for his soul, and all I can do is pray and ask others to pray that God would be victorious in Liam’s life and that Liam’s heart would be gripped by God alone. Nonetheless, I am encouraged when I seem to see seeds taking root into his soul.

The month Liam was born, Billy Graham died, and I remember succinctly thinking that the world needed another Billy Graham. As a result, I began to pray that God would give Liam a gift and heart for evangelism and that He would use him mightily to reach the lost. It is my most constant prayer for Liam alongside asking God to bring Liam to faith in Jesus, and I truly believe that God planted these desires I have for him in my heart all along. Nonetheless, there is still a spiritual battle to be won.

Would you join me in praying that God would be victorious in my son’s life? I believe God would use our prayers for him and for the children in our lives in general to water the seeds that are being sown into their hearts. Let’s be faithful to be a part of the good work God is doing in them as we eagerly wait in anticipation to see what grows.

A Wholehearted Offering

I originally thought that Liam had drawn the letter “E” for ear, albeit backwards for the ear on the right of this picture,  and I was so impressed with him. But then he informed me that it was not the letter “E” at all. It was supposed to be earwax! 😆

“I have a surprise for you!” Liam exclaimed in a sing-song sort of voice on the way home from school a few days ago. He then proceeded to rummage through his backpack from the back seat, insisting I take his surprise from him once he found it, despite the fact that I was driving us home.

Fortunately, I’ve had a lot of practice twisting my arm behind the driver seat to give and take things from him over the years, so this was no different. I even managed to get a good look at his creation as we came to a stop at a light—a picture of a person he had drawn during art class that day.

“You drew this for me?” I asked him in pleasant surprise.

“Yes,” he answered sweetly. It’s not the first time that he has given me little gifts like this, but for some reason, my heart felt especially touched by this piece of art. Perhaps it was knowing that he had been thinking about me throughout the day. Or maybe it was because Liam had poured his little heart into this picture that resembled a monster to me out of love for me, confidently knowing I would gladly accept it from him.

No matter the exact reason, Liam left me with a lot to think about that afternoon in light of this surprise.

Something I love about the stage of life that I find Liam in is that he is not self-conscious of his developing abilities. He doesn’t compare his work to the more advanced artwork that I have been working on for nearly a year (more on that in a later post), nor does he compare his abilities to the other children he knows, becoming insecure by those who are more advanced in their artistic abilities than he is. He is pretty unaware of this idea of comparison as of now (unless it comes to who has the bigger dessert! Lol!), and I’m grateful for that. What compels him to draw is his love for the activity and his desire to shower love on friends and acquaintances alike through sharing his little masterpieces with them.

I wish I were more like Liam in that respect. I wish the world were more like him in that respect. I have a feeling that we would see a lot more acts of kindness and many more displays of beauty in this world if we could shed our own fears and insecurities when it comes to our own abilities. And imagine how much more God’s glory would fill this earth if we, as believers, would offer our talents, abilities, and gifts up to God wholeheartedly for His good pleasure as He used them to bless others!

 As Liam and I continued our short drive home that afternoon, the passage from Luke 21 about the widow’s offering came to mind.

Jesus looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the offering box, and he saw a poor widow put in two small copper coins. And he said, “Truly, I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all of them. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.”

Luke 21:1-4 ESV

Although this story speaks of generous financial giving, it’s a story that God used in my life years ago to convict me of other areas in my life where I was failing to be generous toward God. He specifically used it to convict me of my desire to keep certain talents hidden due to insecurities and my own self-perception that I didn’t measure up to others when it came to those specific abilities. The truth is, I felt like I had so little to offer when it came to certain aptitudes that I felt God was nudging me to use. So many others could give substantially more than I could in those areas.

But then God reminded me of this widow. It didn’t matter if all I could give was much less than others as long as it was my all. After all, He knew how much talent I had and to what extent my abilities would develop and grow, because He had given me those abilities and caused them to grow in the first place. All He was asking is that I not hide the gifts that He had given me. All He wanted was for me to focus on pleasing Him with my talents and abilities, because pleasing Him was all that mattered in the end anyway, and in offering my gifts, abilities, and talents back to Him in worship, I knew He could ultimately use them to bless others also.

I can’t say I don’t struggle with this topic anymore. It continues to be an issue that I must continue to surrender to the Lord. But when I think of Liam and all the people that he’s made smile through his rough sketches of faces generally sporting mustaches and beards, I can’t help but think what God might do when I wholeheartedly offer my abilities back to Him. After all, if He could feed 5,000 from one boy’s two fish and fives loaves of bread (John 6), then what might He do through us if we give our all to Him?


The plant my mom gave me recently in honor of the baby I lost.

My birthday is quickly drawing near, and with it comes the recognition that the first-year anniversary of my loss is approaching too.

Last year, as I was losing my unborn baby, I was doubly upset to be experiencing this loss on my birthday, of all days. What should have been a day of celebration was marred by death and sorrow.

This year, I’m not so bothered that the two share a date. Oddly, it makes me feel closer to my child, and the day has also become a symbol of what our lifetimes inevitably entail—joy and sorrow that intermingle with ceaseless cycles of life and death.

Lately I have been thinking of how unknown my baby was to others (and even to me), but he* is fully known by God, and now he knows God. And although he is largely unnamed to most people here on earth, God already had a named reserved for him that can never be renounced or taken away. Furthermore, although he was never able to claim a physical address here in this world, he has a permanent home beyond this earthly existence that can never be destroyed.

Thinking about these things brings fresh tears to my eyes and washes over me like a soothing balm that brings further healing to my soul. My baby is not forgotten. His life mattered. It still does.

So, on my birthday, I’ll do something special to remember him, if nothing else to make a silent statement to myself that his life mattered. It left an imprint on my heart that will last my lifetime, and I hope that the ways in which I am changing as a result of his brief life help me to influence others for the better, leaving a ripple effect of impact for eternity on his behalf.

*I lost my baby before discovering its gender, so it may have been a girl. I’ll only know once I reach heaven myself.

Puzzle Pieces and Personal Plans

A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.”

Proverbs 16:9

Liam and I worked on a number of puzzles in the spring. He has been given several over the years that are age appropriate for him (3-5 years old), so I have especially enjoyed working on these simple puzzles with him. He has enjoyed them too, although I cannot say that they have necessarily been easy for him.

In April, as we tried to put each puzzle together, I would often find him trying to pound two pieces together, using his tiny fist as a hammer. In his little mind, he had found two puzzle pieces that were meant to be together, so he would force them together, no matter the effort. Then, when I would point out to him that the pieces were not intended to fit together and tried to take them apart, he would become upset with me and try to keep the puzzle pieces out of my grasp. He had worked hard to put them together, so that is how they would stay!

I became discreet in taking the puzzle pieces apart over time, and eventually we would create the image that the puzzle was intended to be. It just took lots of time and patience.

Today, Liam doesn’t struggle as much with his puzzles. He seems to understand the color schemes more and how the pieces work together. He is also starting to grasp the idea of a bigger picture, and he has done these puzzles enough to know what that bigger picture should be. It doesn’t mean he has mastered piecing puzzles together entirely. They are still a bit of a challenge to him. Nonetheless, he is able to hold onto each puzzle piece a little more loosely as he seeks out the perfect fit for each piece.

Although we don’t work on puzzles too much anymore due to time constraints, the image of Liam pounding puzzle pieces together has come to my mind over the last few months, because I realize with a sense of conviction that I am not much different than Liam was last spring when it comes to doing puzzles.

 I think I have been doing puzzles in my mind for most of my life. I hold different pieces in my hands at different times—puzzle pieces representing my desires, dreams, goals, expectations, etc. The problem is, the puzzle pieces strewn out in front of me, most commonly known as reality, don’t always fit together with the ones I grasp onto ever so tightly in my hands. And because of that, I am left with the desire to try to pound all of them together anyway in a desperate attempt to create what I believe to be the perfect picture of puzzle pieces for my life. But just like Liam has had to learn that there is a specific color scheme and pattern which each puzzle piece is meant to be part of, I sense God asking me to trust that all of my puzzle pieces are meant to be part of a specific color scheme and pattern as well. A God-ordained one. And just like Liam has learned that each properly placed puzzle piece will eventually form a perfect picture, I sense God inviting me to trust that He is intricately and intentionally piecing my puzzle pieces together to form a picture that is far more perfect than I could ever make it out to be—a picture that is even greater than my own story and that will far outlast my lifetime, all for His glory.

As we enter this new year, I am very aware of all the new puzzle pieces I bring into it with me. I have new goals, new dreams, and things that I eagerly anticipate about this year and that I pray will come to pass. But I am also aware of my need to hold onto each puzzle piece loosely—to hold my hands open in worship to God with each piece surrendered to Him. Because in the long run, I can’t be certain of how each of my puzzle pieces will fit together or if I will even like where each one goes. But I can be certain of this—the end result will be worth it. The final picture will be splendid and glorious and more magnificent than I could ever fathom. And in the end, I’ll be glad that I surrendered each puzzle piece to God and that He chose me to be a part of this beautifully exquisite puzzle in the making.

The 2022 List

Lists from years past

I finally got around to writing my “Best of” list for this year. It’s the list that I generally write over Thanksgiving weekend to remember all the good things that took place throughout the year.

This year, I was a little late in writing it. Thanksgiving weekend was pretty busy, and then my son got sick. And in all truthfulness, I just didn’t feel like writing it. The first half of the year was rather depleting to me as we experienced three big M’s as a family—miscarriage, a move, and mass murder within our new community (we live in Uvalde). And this fall wasn’t much better as my son has navigated school for the first time with many challenges and hardships that have weighed heavily on my own heart.

I finally sat down to write my list shortly after Thanksgiving weekend with a sense of dread as I thought of the trials we had faced over these last twelve months. And I listed those hardships, despite the fact that they were not the best of anything, because they felt too important to leave them off of the events of this year. But as I looked through photos to help jog my memory over what I had lived through these last twelve months, I still saw how much beauty and goodness this year held and how extravagantly generous God had been to me and my family. Furthermore, I have seen God’s hand at work in the midst of the hardships. I believe that miscarrying my own baby earlier this year has given me a deeper sense of compassion for others who have lost their children—something I didn’t know I would need several months later as tragedy rocked our community in every crevice and corner. And it has also allowed me to connect with long lost friends who have been through similar storms.

And as far as the events of May 24th are concerned, I have seen how much the gospel has gone forth in this community as a result of that tragedy. Friends and acquaintances of mine were able to share the gospel internationally on news broadcasts as reporters interviewed them in the days to follow. Moreover, there have been a number of ministries that have poured out the love of Christ over this community ever since that day, not to mention the countless of prayers worldwide that God is answering on our behalf as a town.  People are finding life in Christ here.

As for the move, although I still find certain aspects of it difficult (we’ve had to drive an hour and a half to see certain medical specialists throughout the last few months due to a lack of options here), I am truly grateful for the sense of community that my family and I have been able to form as a result of living here. We have found a church family that truly cares for us and deeply loves us, and I know we are very blessed to get to experience that.

The hardships have been great, and I don’t mean to minimize the pain of the losses in light of the good that has been birthed from them, especially for a community that is learning to live with a deep void in their lives. I will say this, however—I am so extremely grateful that the darkness is being defeated. I’m thankful that good wins in the end. And I’m so eternally grateful that something greater is awaiting those of us who have put our faith in Jesus. This life is not the end.

Among other things that I am grateful for this year, I am so thankful that JJ and I got to see our parents and all our siblings this summer, along with several other family members. With all of us living in different places, and one sibling living internationally, getting to have these reunions are rare and so special when they happen.

I’m grateful for all the opportunities that God has been giving JJ as of late to share the gospel. It is wonderful seeing his passion for God and hearing about all the opportunities God is opening up to him, and it motivates me to pray that God would give me opportunities to share too.

I’m grateful for the ways in which Liam is growing and for the spiritual questions that he is asking. It shows me that he is thinking about God and makes me believe that God is already answering my prayers for my son regarding faith.

And lastly (although I really could say much more), I’m grateful for how our family is growing, especially spiritually, and for how these different trials have been causing us to look more to God. He truly does crown each year with goodness. I’m glad I finally wrote the list for this year so that I could see just that.

You crown the year with Your goodness,
And Your paths drip with abundance.”

Psalm 65:11

Christmas Eve Cookies (Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookies)

As is becoming tradition, I entered the Christmas cookie contest again this year. And as also seems to be tradition, I didn’t win once again! Lol!

I’m never too saddened by this, to be quite honest. Would I love the prize money? Of course! But I always feel torn by the fact that I would not be able to share my cookie creations here on this blog if I won, and I really like sharing these recipes with you all.

Today’s recipe is yet another Abuelita specialty (if you didn’t get a chance to try my Abuelita pumpkin loaf, you can check it out here

I actually created these cookies by the end of August. I got a little too excited about the upcoming Christmas cookie competition and wanted ample time to come up with a great recipe, and after making these, I was pretty convinced I had a contest-worthy cookie. I was even more confident about my selection when my mom came to visit and sampled them, as she couldn’t seem to get enough of them!

Around that time, I gave some to a friend who, upon biting into one, excitedly exclaimed how much they tasted like Christmas to her. All the nostalgia of childhood flooded her with that one cinnamon-and-spice filled bite.

Due to that specific moment, I decided to name these cookies Christmas Eve Cookies, because the more I eat them, the more I have to agree! These soft, chewy bites of chocolate with hints of cinnamon make this cookie the best cozy, Christmas Eve treat!



  • 2 Abuelita hot chocolate tablets (2 whole disks)
  • 2 T half and half
  • 1 c butter, softened
  • 1 c packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 c flour
  • 1 c oat flour
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 c semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 c cinnamon baking chips


Microwave the chocolate tablets and half and half together in 30 second increments until melted. Mix together and set aside. Beat together the brown sugar and butter, then beat in the eggs. Gradually mix in the hot chocolate mixture.

In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, oat flour, baking soda, and salt, then combine the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients until well incorporated. Stir in the chocolate and cinnamon chips, then chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to an hour.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. After the dough has chilled, drop the dough onto a parchment-lined baking sheet by the rounded tablespoon, then bake for 10 minutes. Makes 4 to 5 dozen cookies.

Blessings in Disguise

I couldn’t help but smile at JJ as we walked out of our son’s bedroom one evening over a month ago. We had just prayed one of the most absurd prayers we probably had ever prayed per Liam’s request, yet we meant it with all our hearts.

What Liam had asked us to pray about had everything to do with school that evening. It is his first year to be in a classroom setting, and  he has been having a hard time following the rules and adjusting in general, so his teacher bought him a set of fake mustaches to reward to him for each day that he behaved, as she soon discovered how much he loves mustaches.

As a result, Liam asked us to pray that he could earn one the next day, and we did. I wholeheartedly asked God to make possible such an amusing request.

Not much later that evening, Liam called to me from his bedroom, so I went to check on him and found him fully awake and trying to hatch up a plan as to how he could obtain a fake mustache. All sorts of ideas went through his head as to how he could get one, so I reminded him of the one true and simple way of earning one, and he started to cry. In his young mind, he already believed that he was not capable of following the rules like he needed to in order to earn his prize.

Seeing him in such a hopeless state left me wanting to cry myself. How could someone so young feel this way?

It quickly became evident to me just how much the enemy was at work in this situation, so I explained to Liam that night that he had an enemy who was lying to him and that he must not listen to him.

“Who?” Liam interrupted me out of genuine curiosity.

“It’s Satan, and he’s a liar, and he wants you to be sad,” I explained in little-kid language as best as I could. I then reiterated to Liam to not listen to those lies that went through his head, and I explained that God loved him and wanted to help him, furthermore adding that he could do all things through Jesus who could strengthen him.

If felt a bit odd to tell Liam that last part since he has not yet put his faith in Jesus and is far from the apostle Paul’s mindset when he penned those words, but I truly believe that God can enable Liam to obey and earn that mustache, and I want him to recognize that he can ask God to help him in the moments when he feels like he is least capable of following the rules.

On the way to school the next day, I reminded Liam of what we had talked about the night before, repeating to him that He could do all things through Jesus who was able to strengthen him and reminding him to ask God to help him when he felt least capable of behaving. And several evenings later, Liam and I had the same conversation that we had had only a few nights earlier as he began to doubt again that he could ever obtain his prize.

This season of life has been exhausting to me in so many ways, and I have felt broken over and over again as I am told of my son’s classroom struggles and feel helpless to fix them from afar. I have desperately prayed for him in this season of life, cried over his battles, and continually sought the prayers and encouragement of godly women whom I trust. It has been an extremely challenging season that I have just wished to have come to an end. But then I think of these moments where I am able to have conversations with my four-year-old about spiritual warfare—conversations that I never would have had with him at such a young age if it had not been for these current hardships. And I like to think that these little talks are the seeds that God is planting into my young son’s heart for a future harvest that will be bountiful. I also choose to believe that these moments are somehow changing the trajectory of my son’s life for the better—that God is preparing a deeply rooted faith in Him for the future because he is learning these vital elements of what it looks like to be engaged in spiritual warfare now.

Fortunately for us, we seem to slowly be entering into a better season now. I pray that is the case, at least. There are still concerns his teacher has, and he still has some work to do to be where he needs to be, but I don’t want to discard the blessings in disguise as we navigate through these current hardships or the struggles of any season. I want to have the spiritual eyes to see the greater things that God is doing in my son, through my family, in me, and all around us in general.

I have to keep believing what we know to be true as believers:

“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”

Romans 8:28

For those of you who have been praying for my family and me throughout this time, thank you for your continual prayers and for being a part of the good that God is working together in our life. I appreciate you so much.

Abuelita Chocolate Pumpkin Bread

It’s no secret that fall is my favorite time of year. I don’t know if I could necessarily say this while growing up in Colorado, where the seasons were much more distinct. But here in Texas, where we have a little bit of cold weather and a whole lot of heat, I get excited about the fall and the promise of cooler weather on its way.

From what I’ve experienced of Texan life these past twelve years, it really doesn’t begin to cool down until this time of year, when the season is nearly halfway over. Still, I put up fall décor, burn seasonal candles, and bake, as if all these activities will help to usher in the crisp, autumn air.

I especially enjoy baking. My mom always baked this time of year when I was a child, so it brings back good memories. Fall just isn’t fall without the baked goods. This weekend, I thought to make a chocolate pumpkin loaf that my mom included in a recipe book that she gave me years ago. Unfortunately, I didn’t have quite the right ingredients, and it was going to be a bit difficult to halve this recipe that would otherwise make three loaves, so I decided to improvise and came up with this delectable, sweet bread instead!

Although it may not completely feel like fall here yet with our afternoons as warm as they are, it certainly smelled like fall in our house Saturday morning as this bread baked! Pumpkin and chocolate wafted through the air with sweet hints of cinnamon. This bread is the perfect combination of the three with rich chocolate chips to add sweetness and additional texture to each delicious, moist bite.

The “secret” ingredient for this bread is not so secret since I included it in the name for this recipe—the Abuelita chocolate, which is a Mexican type of hot chocolate that can be found in the Latino section of your local Walmart if you live Stateside.

This decadent hot chocolate, along with the pumpkin and fall spices, truly adds the right blend to make it feel like fall, wherever you might live and whatever season you are in. So, whip yourself up some of this bread today and come enjoy this season with me!

As always, let me know if you give this recipe a try and what you think about it. And if you’ll excuse me for a moment, I’m going to grab myself another slice…



  • 1 tablet Abuelita hot chocolate (the entire disk)
  • 1 T half and half
  • 15 oz can pumpkin
  • ½ c unsweetened apple sauce
  • ¾ c sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 t pure vanilla extract
  • 2 c flour
  • 1 T pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 1 t baking powder
  • ½ t baking soda
  • ½ t salt
  • 1 c chocolate chips


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and grease a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray or line with parchment paper. Set aside. Heat the Abuelita chocolate disk and the half and half together in the microwave in 30-second increments until melted. Mix thoroughly and set aside to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, combine together the pumpkin, apple sauce, sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract together, then stir in the Abuelita chocolate mixture. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, then add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring just enough to combine. Gently mix in the chocolate chips, then spread the mixture into the loaf pan. Bake for 60-80 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in several center pieces comes out clean. Let cool in the pan, then remove, slice, and enjoy! Makes 1 loaf, roughly 10-12 slices.